The new centre is a "Monument of Mercy", established as a response to Pope Francis’s appeal during the extraordinary Jubilee of 2016. It is located in Taloja, where PIME has run a dispensary for lepers since 1984. It will be a place of culture and interfaith dialogue, exchange of ideas and openness to the marginalised. The goal is to bring patients and healthy people into contact to overcome the leprosy taboo and the shunning of Dalits.
In Lhasa, Chinese officials urge Tibetans to be loyal to Beijing, complaining about those who harbour religious faith and worship in secret. In Markham County, police have been deployed in Tibetan neighbourhoods "to assess the mood of the people”. In Chamdo, visiting monasteries is banned, whilst in Sichuan, Tibetan government workers cannot go home for the holiday.
The local bishop, Mgr Aloysius Murwito, also ordained three deacons. Religious vocations in the diocese are rare because of the lack of a minor seminary and ethnic Asmat’s nomadic lifestyle. Last year, more than 70 children died from measles and malnutrition-related diseases in the area.
In a speech Xi cites the fathers of Marxism and great Chinese classics to assert the need to preserve nature. He also cited ecology as one of the five target areas to rejuvenate the Chinese nation.
The name of the monarch’s 67-year-old elder sister does not appear on the official list of candidates. For the Election Commission, members of the royal family must be “above politics". Pro-monarchy activist calls for the dissolution of the Thai Raksa Chart Party for violating the election law.
In Calcutta the celebrations for the 27th Day are underway, entitled "You received without payment; give without payment". The prefect of the Dicastery for Integral human development spoke about the role of health workers in the care of the suffering. The sick "are not only recipients of the work of evangelization, but also active subjects of this same apostolic action".
IMF Christine Lagarde launches alarm at the Arab Tax Forum in Dubai. In 10 years, the public debt among the oil importing nations rose from 64% to 85% of GDP. In some countries today it is over 90%. Among the exporting countries, the figure is 33%. Thus far reforms have been insufficient.
Gen Votel talks about timing related to the situation on the ground. Return of equipment and materials underway; about 2 thousand soldiers still remain on the ground. The Arab-Kurdish militias are meeting strong resistance from the jihadists. The "final battle" is approaching.
A new chapter opens in the case involving Msgr. Franco Mulakkal, on trial for sexual violence. The Missionary Sisters of Jesus had received a transfer order from the mother superior of the congregation. They do not want to leave the nun who has accused the bishop alone and they fear the sabotage of the trials.
It is about 8.2% more than a previous five-year agreement, which expired at the end of last year. The agreement is valid only for one year. President Trump had repeatedly complained about Seoul's contribution, considered to be derisory. More than 28,000 US troops are stationed in South Korea.
Manama withdrew Hakeem extradition request for al-Araibi. Australia had previously granted him refugee status. Canberra thanks the Thai authorities, but is waiting for the young man to return home. Bahrain activists in exile: "Great victory for the human rights movement".