29 March 2017
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  • 29/03/2017 - CHINA

    The people's court refuses to publish the final sentence against Fr. Fei Jisheng, a priest of the diocese of Shenyang. Local Catholics: "The judges recognize his innocence, but the court wants him convicted." The arrest took place on October 18 last year on suspicion of embezzlement of a sum of money which, however, belonged to the priest. Charges hide authorities’ attempts to stop his work of evangelization.




    28/03/2017 - CHINA

    Suzhou, 9 human rights activists detained in secret since September


    On 8 September 2016, the police seized the protesters outside of the people's court in Suzhou. Eight are under "residential surveillance at a designated place" (RSDL), while another has been formally arrested. Those arrested were protesting the conviction of Fan Mugen. Some of the detainees are accused of having sent "politically sensitive" online messages. In November, other police arrests. The UN Committee against Torture: "The extent to which RSDL is widely abused illicit and open to interpretation and application." Eleven countries have called for an end to the practice.


    28/03/2017 - CHINA

    Former judge detained for helping farmers in complaints against the government


    Huang Yunmin was to set to accompany farmers to Beijing to file petitions. He could get up to ten years in prison. He had criticised the judicial bureaucracy and exposed court corruption. Because of this, he was forced out of his job.


    28/03/2017 - HONG KONG – CHINA

    Carrie Lam to visit mainland bodies in Hong Kong

    by Paul Wang

    Hong Kong’s new chief executive will make a courtesy call, not a visit of gratitude for the mainland’s support. She pledged to uphold the principle of "one country, two systems". Beijing's influence is “worrisome”.


    27/03/2017 - HONG KONG – CHINA

    On Carrie Lam’s first day, prosecution awaits Occupy Central leaders

    by Paul Wang

    Lam is elected chief executive with 777 votes. Viewed as Beijing candidate, she also seen as CY 2.0, heir to Leung Chun-ying (CY 1.0) who is against democratic demands. The formal transfer of power will take place on 1 July, the 20th anniversary of Hong Kong’s return to China.


    24/03/2017 - CHINA

    A "green necklace" of trees against air pollution in Beijing


    Hebei Province plans to use wetlands around the capital. The latter however suffers from water shortages. Beijing’s pollution crisis could be tackled by closing a significant number of steel factories in the region, but powerful interests and state enterprises have opposed such a move.


    23/03/2017 - CHINA – UNITED STATES

    New maritime incident between China and the United States


    Chinese air traffic controllers ordered a US military aircraft to leave a disputed area, but the US bomber ignored it and pursued its mission. ""Pacific Air Forces . . . did not recognise the Chinese Air Defence Identification Zone (ADIZ) when it was announced in November of 2013, and does not recognise it today," a US official said.


    22/03/2017 - CHINA

    Religious activities by students and faculty closely controlled


    Through special groups, the United Front tightly monitors religious activities on campuses by Chinese and foreigners. Anyone caught engaged in religious activities is expelled or fired.


    21/03/2017 - NEPAL – CHINA – TIBET

    Police arrest hundreds of Tibetans in the wake of Pema Gyaltsen’s self-immolation in Kardze

    by Christopher Sharma

    Fifty-eight years after Tibet’s uprising, protests continue in favour of the freedom of the Tibetan people and the return of the Dalai Lama. India and China are in a standoff over the spiritual leader of Tibetan Buddhism. Nothing is known of the conditions of Pema Gyaltsen, who sacrificed himself in a week-end protest.


    21/03/2017 - HONG KONG

    Election Committee to pick Hong Kong’s next chief executive on 26 March


    An elite group of 1,194 individuals will choose one of three candidates for a city of 7.3 million. Beijing-backed Carrie Lam and pan-democratic John Tsang are leading. Fearing any disorders, police has an evacuation plan for the authorities. The Justice and Peace Commission is opposed to the selection system, calling the electoral law an illusion of democracy. The Chinese government controls the outcome and protects the interests of privileged groups.


    21/03/2017 - ASIA-USA

    Forbes: China second largest number of billionaires, Asian women prevail among the "self-made"


    319 Chinese billionaires. 18th richest in the world an Asian. Among the female billionaires who built their wealth, a Vietnamese. 13% of most billionaires in the world: the most significant increase in 31 years.


    21/03/2017 - ASIA

    The happiest countries in the world: Norway in first place, China ranked 79th despite economic growth


    The ranking takes into account the gross domestic product per person, life expectancy, social welfare, freedom and perception of corruption. Well Australia and New Zealand, Cambodia is the saddest Asian country. Disappointment for India, to 122th place.


    20/03/2017 - CHINA – UNITED STATES

    A new course in US-China diplomatic relations


    US Secretary of State exchanges “warm words” with China’s president, avoiding the most sensitive issues for the two countries. The meeting sets the stage for Xi Xinping’s visit to the United States.


    20/03/2017 - TIBET - CHINA

    First Tibetan immolation of 2017: a young 24 year old sets himself on fire


    The victim, Pema Gyaltsen, was a farmer. His family beaten by police in Kardze. He is the 147 immolation since 2009. He called for the return of the Dalai Lama and for freedom in Tibet.


    18/03/2017 - CHINA-US

    US Secretary of State arrives in China, after threats of military options against Pyongyang

    by Wang Zhicheng

    Today the meeting with Foreign Minister Wang Yi; tomorrow with Xi Jinping. Patience toward North Korea "is over." Proposed boycott of Chinese banks and companies that trade with Pyongyang.


    17/03/2017 - TAIWAN – CHINA

    Taiwan to deploy missiles against China, where there is talk of reunification by force


    For the first time, Taiwanese Defence Minister Feng Shih-kuan said the island can strike in China targets, up to 1,500 km. Both sides start a military buildup. Trump is set to deliver new sophisticated weapons to Taiwan.


    17/03/2017 - CHINA – S. ARABIA

    Contracts for 65 billion dollars between Beijing and Riyadh

    by Wang Zhicheng

    16/03/2017 - CHINA

    Experts tell authorities to remove population controls


    The end of China’s one-child policy has led to more births, but not enough to prevent the rapid aging of the population. In the next five years, the number of births will range between 17 and 20 million a year. The government should eliminate population controls.


    16/03/2017 - CHINA

    Communist Party? No thanks. To serve the people, it is enough to be Christian

    by China Source Team

    Joining the Party guarantees jobs, career, social recognition. However, the Party’s constitution bans membership in any religion. Christians who do join the Party live a double life, hiding or abandoning their faith. However, there are also some Christians who choose a job without a Party card; some even make a lifetime commitment to the mission.


    15/03/2017 - CHINA

    Li Keqiang’s press conference: what was said and what was not

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    In a two-hour press conference, the prime minister answered 18 questions on topics ranging from US-China relations and the south China Sea to Hong Kong, Taiwan, the Korean Peninsula, and the economy. Despite the attempt to smooth things over, tensions remain, like Beijing trade war against Taiwan and South Korea, and its “distortions" over Hong Kong. Whilst urging ASEAN countries not to "take sides", China continues its militarisation of disputed islands.


    14/03/2017 - CHINA – VATICAN

    In memory of Mgr Wang Milu, a witness of faith

    by Peng Jian Dao*

    The testimony of a priest who personally knew the underground bishop who died recently. Mgr Wang lived in poverty and died in hospital without medical care because he could not pay the cost. Thanks to his courage, the Church in China survived through a difficult and complex period.


    14/03/2017 - CHINA – SOUTH KOREA

    Beijing retaliates against South Korea’s economy over THAAD


    China has already taken a number of retaliatory measures against South Korea in the content, tourist and retail sectors. Survey shows that 56.2 per cent of businesses feel they will be “negatively affected”. Beijing has banned tour packages to South Korea and forced the closure of more than half of retail giant Lotte’s hypermarkets. Asia’s fourth largest economy could lose up to US$ 7.3 billion or 0.53 per cent of its GDP, dealing a harsh blow to its growth prospects.


    13/03/2017 - CHINA

    The 'successes' of Chinese law: convictions for graft and activism

    by Wang Zhicheng

    The Supreme Court’s report on justice lays out figures on trials and convictions involving graft: 45,000 cases involving 63,000 people. The greatest achievement was the conviction of human rights lawyers and Christians, like Zhou Shifeng and Hu Shigen, on charges of conspiring "against state security."


    11/03/2017 - CHINA – TIBET

    Internet blocked in Sichuan on the anniversary of Tibet’s national uprising


    The move began yesterday till 17 March. Chinese authorities want to prevent Tibetans from receiving news about events abroad. In India, the Tibetan Diaspora organised a march; in Nepal, the government banned any commemoration.


    10/03/2017 - CHINA

    Zhou Xiaochuan: This year, the yuan is expected to remain "fairly stable"


    It is impossible to predict with certainty what will affect events surrounding the " people's currency." The government's objective is to maintain growth at around 6.5%. The foreign exchange reserves decrease by 4 thousand to $ 3 trillion US dollars.

     


    09/03/2017 - CHINA

    For Wei Jingsheng, Xi has gone from liberal to dictator


    Xi’s attitude will lead to the collapse of the Communist regime. He thinks he is stronger than Mao Zedong, but nowadays it is no longer possible to deceive the Chinese with Marxism-Leninism. The great dissident evaluates Xi’s first five years or rule.


    09/03/2017 - CHINA

    Beijing’s moderate (and inaccurate) defence budget hides domestic security costs

    by Wang Zhicheng

    Controlling half of all petitioners could cost US$ 146 billion, as much as defence spending. A system of “smart" vehicle license plates is being vetted. Stability remains the government’s main concern. Defence spending does not include items that have a civilian application. Military spending in the disputed South China Sea islands is passed off as civilian.


    08/03/2017 - CHINA

    Chinese women complain of discrimination in the workplace


    Most companies favour male employees. Discrimination also affects online job platforms, this according to 22 per cent of women applicants. Women have fewer opportunities for career development and promotion.


    08/03/2017 - CHINA

    Lent, a time to satisfy the hunger and thirst for God among Chinese

    by Bodi Jiao

    Those disappointed by materialism, consumerism and communist ideology seek new spiritual sources. In various Chinese parishes courses for catechumens are organized, but also studies and Bible reading, Eucharistic adoration, the Way of the Cross and many acts of charity.

     


    08/03/2017 - CHINA - KOREA

    Wang Yi: No to Thaad anti-missile system


    The Chinese foreign minister calls on Pyongyang to stop its nuclear program and US-Seoul to cancel the military exercises. "Two accelerating trains, coming toward each other with neither side willing to give way". Beijing fears Thaad radar could be used for espionage. Boycott of Korean goods. Korean Church against Thaad because it is dragging the peninsula into a "new Cold War".


    07/03/2017 - ASIA

    At least 900 million people paid bribes in 2016 in Asia-Pacific region


    Transparency International found that India and Vietnam are the most corrupt whilst Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Australia are the least. The poor suffer the most, but in Myanmar, Vietnam and Cambodia the richest are asked for bribes the most. Bribes “can kill”. Many governments remain lukewarm towards the problem.






    Editor's choices

    VATICAN
    Pope tells young people to remember the past, to have courage in the present and hope for the future



    The Message for the 32nd World Youth Day was issued today centred on “The ‘great things’ that the Almighty accomplished’.” In her meeting with Elizabeth, Mary becomes a model. The pontiff calls on young people to avoid being couch potatoes, safe and cosy, urges them to rediscover the relationship with seniors. The Church experience is not a flash mob. The future should be experienced in a constructive way, and “the institutions of marriage, consecrated life and priestly mission” should not be devalued.


    AFGHANISTAN
    Fr. Moretti: The Little Sisters of Jesus, for 60 years " Afghan among Afghans"



    They have lived for 60 years at the service of the needy. They remained in Kabul under Soviet occupation, the Taliban control and the NATO bombing. Respected by all, even by the Taliban. This February their experience will end, according to Fr. Moretti "an example for us all."


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