23 June 2017
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  • 23/06/2017 - ASIA-EUROPE

    The rare stand taken by the German ambassador Michael Clauss for the release of Msgr. Peter Shao Zhumin and Freedom of Commerce on the New Silk Road, under the shadow of the Chinese monopoly. The silence surrounding the fragmentation of the international legal system. Instead of democracies, there are autocratic regimes, violent nationalisms, oriental satrapies. And Trump sells arms to Saudi Arabia.


    by Luca Galantini

    22/06/2017 - IRAQ

    Mar Sako: reconstruction and coexistence plans in Mosul and Nineveh to offset Islamic State destruction


    The Chaldean Patriarch condemns the destruction of Mosul’s historic mosque and the devastation by the Islamic State’s "culture of death". He prayed in front of Fr Ragheed’s church for coexistence between Christians and Muslims. He called on Catholics in Europe and the West to visit the refugees, to teach them "to have more confidence in the future". He gave a first assessment of the return of displaced people.


    22/06/2017 - THAILAND – MYANMAR

    Suicide rate soars among Burmese refugees in Mae La Camp (Thailand)


    The camp hosts about 50,000 Myanmar citizens, mostly ethnic Karen. In two years 28 refugees took their lives and 66 attempted. For camp residents, "The situation is tragic". Suicides are caused by the lack of freedom, limited educational opportunities, uncertainty, and economic difficulties. Four in 10 deaths were from drinking weed-killer. Family problems were a factor in almost half of all cases, alcohol and substance abuses more than a third.


    22/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: The Churches of the East are alive, despite persecution and terrorism


    Receiving the participants at the "Reunion of Aid Agencies for the Oriental Churches" Assembly, Francis recommends the formation of the clergy. "Let us not forget that in the East even today, Christians - no matter whether Catholics, Orthodox, or Protestants - spill their blood as a seal of their witness."


    22/06/2017 - INDIA

    For Bishop Menamparampil, vandalism against Catholic cathedral in Assam has hurt and raised concerns among Christians


    The cathedral is in Bongaigaon. Diocesan authorities have called for calm and organised a prayer vigil for peace and harmony. The pyx was stolen, and the tabernacle broken. For Sajan K George, the "robbery is a way to offend [Christian] religious feelings”.


    22/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope: the pastor is passionate, knows how to discern and know how to denounce evil, without being naïve "do-gooders"


    Francis recalls the example of Don Milani who with his "I care," taught his boys to go on in life. Take care: take care of your life. This is no!'".


    22/06/2017 - TAJIKISTAN

    Dushanbe: young Tajiks banned from pilgrimage to Makkah


    Officially, the reason is to encourage seniors to make the journey; in fact, the aim is to prevent youth radicalisation. The Islamic majority country tightens controls on the religious life of its people.


    22/06/2017 - CHINA

    Protestant Christians jailed to confess membership in an "evil cult"


    Fengle is a house church in Jiangmen, but the government treats it as an "evil cult". Police seized bibles and arrested and interrogated some members. However, “the biggest cult is hidden in plain view: the Communist Party.”


    22/06/2017 - PHILIPPINES

    Pigcawayan, Biff rebels free hostages. Six dead


    Attacks on military outposts at Barangay Malagakit and Barangay Simsiman. Islamist rebels repelled and fled to the marsh of Liguasan in Maguindanao. During the retreat a school building seized, 31 hostages freed. The military: The attack is not related to Marawi's siege.

     


    22/06/2017 - PALESTINE - EGYPT

    Cairo gives one million liters of fuel to prevent the collapse of Gaza


    The Strip now has two hours of electricity per day. The power plant will return to work in the next few hours. Last week, Hamas leaders met with Egyptian officials.


    22/06/2017 - INDIA - CHINA

    UN says India's population will overtake China in seven years


    Today, 1.3 billion people live in the Republic of India, 1.4 billion in the People's Republic of China. The United Nations report highlights a decline in fertility. The aging of the population is likely to break the social security systems.


    22/06/2017 - IRAQ

    Mosul's Al-Nouri Mosque destroyed. Isis and the United States exchange blame


    In that mosque in Baghdadi proclaimed the caliphate in 2014. Al-Abadi: It is an official declaration of defeat. " The mosque and the leaning minaret were among the oldest monuments in the city dating back to the 12th century. The old town of Mosul has been under siege. According to Isis it was destroyed by American operations.

     


    21/06/2017 - LEBANON – SYRIA

    Bishop Joseph Absi is the new patriarch of the Greek Melkite Church


    Today’s election took place during the extraordinary Synod currently underway in Aley, Lebanon. Born in Damascus in 1946, he has served as a patriarchal vicar in the Syrian capital since 2007. His elevation follows the resignation of Patriarch Emeritus Gregory III Lahham at the end of a troubled period for the community.


    21/06/2017 - IRAQ – VATICAN

    For Bishop Ortega, Christian suffering in Iraq is a gift for us. Now it is time to rebuild


    Christians did not give up their faith, or even pretended to, but left everything behind. Now their life is precarious but there is no grudge in their hearts, as they pray for their persecutors and thankful for what happened because "it was an opportunity to rediscover what is most important, which is faith". On the Nineveh Plain, military victory is not enough. Christians have to return because they are "the presence of Christ."


    21/06/2017 - PHILIPPINES

    Duterte warns of “religious war” in Mindanao, Church and analysts disagree


    Christians “have better guns. They are buying,” said the president. Analysts dismiss his view as baseless attempt to justify martial law. For Card Orlando Quevedo, archbishop of Cotabato, the government should “address the economic and political roots of terrorism” rather than focus on a military solution.


    21/06/2017 - CHINA

    Yulin Dog Meat Festival opens with more visitors


    Until recently, it appeared that the local government was going to ban the event. Although “subdued” with vendors allowed to put only two dogs on display, this year’s edition is drawing more visitors, thanks to the greater visibility generated by animal rights activists. Some 10-20 million dogs are butchered every year. For one local, “eating dog is just like eating fish and chicken."


    21/06/2017 - VATICAN - SOUTH SUDAN

    ‘Pope for South Sudan’ initiative launched



    21/06/2017 - PAKISTAN

    Sindh High Court to vet forced conversion of underage Hindu girl


    Ravita Meghwar is 16 years old from a lower caste. Her parents have filed a complaint that she was abducted, forced to embrace Islam and married off to a man 20 years her senior. The case has sparked controversy and protests by Hindus. The province had rejected the law punishing forced conversions.


    21/06/2017 - VATICAN

    Pope says to be saints we just need to do our duty "with hearts open to God"


    "The last word on man's history is not hatred, it is not death, it is not war. At every moment of life we ​​are assisting the hand of God, and also the discreet presence of all the believers who have preceded us with the sign of faith. "

     


    21/06/2017 - CHINA-GERMANY

    The German ambassador asks China to release Msgr. Shao Zhumin


    In an official statement posted on the embassy site, Michael Clauss asks that the detained bishop of Wenzhou, be given full freedom of movement. Concerns also expressed over drafts of the new regulations on religious activities, which decree the end of the underground communities. It is the first time after a decade that a European ambassador has called for the release of a bishop.


     


    21/06/2017 - SAUDI ARABIA

    The Saudi king nominates 31-year-old son Mohammed bin Salman hereditary prince



    The decision approved by 31 (out of 34) members of the Alliance Council marks a turning point in succession. The current number two Mohammed bin Nayef was dethroned, payment for a weak policy in the context of the crisis with Qatar. The young heir mastermind behind war in Yemen and a supporter of the frontal confrontation with Iran.

     


    21/06/2017 - BELGIUM

    Brussels: suspect attacker killed after an explosion. No victims but a lot of fear


    An explosion shook Brussels’ central station. A witness asserts that the attacker had yelled "Allah is great" before detonating his suitcase. The episode fuels climate of fear in the heart of Europe. Islamic terrorism’s strategy of tension.


     


    21/06/2017 - BANGLADESH

    Gaibandha, Muslims attempt to rape a Catholic tribal

    by Sumon Corraya

    The young woman is 20 years old and belongs to the parish of Mariampur. Family is being pressured to withdraw the complaint. Last year, the local Christian community was attacked by police and Muslims for expropriation of land. Parish priest: "We want justice and security."

     


    20/06/2017 - LEBANON – VATICAN

    After the Golden Jubilee, the future of the Charismatic Renewal (Part II)

    by Fady Noun

    The Charismatic Renewal had gone beyond geographical and ecclesial boundaries, towards a basic ecumenism. The Lebanon War, 9/11, and regional conflicts were in the prophecies of darkness. The Christian exodus and the mission in the Middle East remain important issues. The Renewal’s future is interwoven with the future of the Church and the world. An open spirit and fidelity to the calling are needed.


    20/06/2017 - LIBANO – SYRIA

    Caritas Lebanon: peace and fight against arms trade to meet refugee emergency


    Today is the UN’s World Refugee Day. In 2016, refugees numbered 65.6 million, 300,000 more than last year. Every three seconds someone in the world is forced to abandon their home. For Fr Karam, the US-Saudi arms deal is worrisome. Church backs small entrepreneurship projects.


    20/06/2017 - SRI LANKA

    Movies and plays in Colombo to show the plight of refugees

    by Melani Manel Perera

    Today is World Refugee Day. Sri Lanka hosts 604 refugees in Sri Lanka with another 576 applying for recognition. The government does not guarantee the right to housing, food, education, medical care and does not provide opportunities for legal employment.


    20/06/2017 - MIDDLE EAST – EUROPE

    Terrorism and migrants: Mideast leaders blackmailing Europe

    by Luca Galantini

    Attacks in European capitals are meant to destabilise the foreign policy of countries like Great Britain, Germany, and France. Even Italy’s "neutral" position does not guarantee immunity. Dealing with immigration must be part of a long-term coexistence strategy. Working on economic and political development in countries of origin is also necessary. In ‘Caritas in Veritate’, Benedict XVI had prophetic words.


    20/06/2017 - KAZAKHSTAN

    Astana cracks down on extremism in religions


    Muslims and Jehovah's Witnesses are convicted for "inciting religious hatred". Trials are often done in secret. A new theology programme is introduced in prisons to prevent the radicalisation of prisoners


    20/06/2017 - VATICAN - ITALY

    Pope: Don Mazzolari, a pastor convinced that the destinies of the world mature in the peripheries


    Francis went to Bozzolo, not far from Mantua, tied to the memory of the "parish priest of Italy," the uncomfortable priest of whom Paul VI said, "He walked one step ahead and often we could not hold him back! And so he suffered and we also suffered. It is the fate of prophets. "

     


    20/06/2017 - VATICAN - ITALY

    Pope: Don Milani, the mission of educating a "free conscience"


    Francis travels to Barbiana, in Italy. Don Milani a priest who wanted to "awaken the human in people to open them to the divine". "Only by fully possesing the word is it possible to discern among the many and often confused messages that rain down upon us, and to give expression to the deep instances of our heart, as well as the expectations of justice of so many brothers and sisters waiting for justice."


    20/06/2017 - USA - KOREA

    US student dies on return from Pyongyang. Trump attacks Kim's brutality. Moon deplores death


    No trace of the botulism indicated by North Korea as the reason for his release "for humanitarian reasons". US doctors hypothesize brain damage due to the abuse of psycho-drugs during detention. Otto Warmbier was no longer able to hear, speak or react to external stimulus. The US president reacts and calls for the release of three more American citizens detained in North Korea. South Korean President calls on North to respect the most elementary human rights as a condition for peace building.

     






    Editor's choices

    RUSSA - VATICAN
    Vatican and Russian orthodox scholars debate history and Ostpolitik

    Vladimir Rozanskij

    The conference begins tomorrow and continues until June 21. Joint work was blocked in 2002 over allegations of "proselytism" against the Russian Catholic Church. Change of climate after the meeting between Francis and Kirill in Havana in 2016. Russians prefer to talk about common mission to the world rather than unity of the united Church in the first 10 centuries.

     


    LAOS - VATICAN
    The “strength of the Church is within the small churches”, says Laos’s first cardinal

    Weena Kowitwanij

    On 21 May, Pope Francis announced his nomination, a surprise for Laos’s 50,000- strong Catholic community. It is a “baby Church” that experiences the first proclamation and is turned towards Tribals and animists. "Some of the most serious problems are the shortage of personnel and the quality of education,” the prelate said. "Some people think that being a cardinal is an honour,” but for Mgr Mangkhanekhoun it means advising the pope on how to “solve problems.”


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