03 December 2016
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    03/12/2016 - EGYPT

    Egypt’s parliament recently approved the bill that is now waiting for President al-Sisi’s signature. It imposes sentences of up to five years in prison and fines up to a US$ 650,000. According to critics, the law’s restrictions will have a devastating impact.


    by Loula Lahham

    03/12/2016 - CHINA – UNITED STATES – TAIWAN

    Tsai Ing-wen’s call to Trump irritates Beijing


    The two presidents congratulate each other, talk about close economic, political and security relations between Taiwan and the United States. This has not happened in almost 40 years. The “US sells Taiwan billions of dollars of military equipment but I should not accept a congratulatory call," wonders Trump. Speculation is ripe about possible shifts in US policy towards Beijing.


    03/12/2016 - INDIA

    Open Letter from a Christian leader to Prime Minister Modi asking him to restore a cash-based economy

    by Sajan K George

    Sajan K George writes to the head of the Indian government warning him about the dangers of withdrawing 500- and 1,000-rupee banknotes. The elimination of cash affects the whole economy, creating problems for the social system and agricultural production. Action should be taken before Christmas.


    02/12/2016 - NEPAL

    Poverty, emigration, the main causes of AIDS in Nepal with the sick discriminated at school and in society

    by Christopher Sharma

    Each year, more than a thousand cases are recorded in the Himalayan country, mostly due to unprotected sex. Migrants are infected abroad, in India and the Middle East. HIV-positive children are denied the right to an education.


    02/12/2016 - NORTH KOREA

    Pyongyang slams new UN sanctions, whose effective application is doubted


    The UN hopes to deprive North Korea of ​​about US$ 700 million a year in export revenues. For North Korean authorities, this is another violation by the US-controlled United Nations. Pyongyang tells Trump that it is a nuclear power.


    02/12/2016 - IRAN - USA

    US Senate approves the extension of sanctions against Tehran


    Iran Sanctions Act provides for the extension to 10 years of sanctions. The text approved by 99 votes in favor, 0 votes against. Previously, the Chamber had given the green light to the law. It now needs the signature of outgoing President Obama. The point people of the future Trump administration, include the head of the CIA, ready to cancel the international agreement. Approval in Israel.

     


    01/12/2016 - SYRIA - UN

    UN: Aleppo east, "one giant graveyard”, humanitarian corridors needed


    The UN Under-Secretary for Humanitarian Affairs appeals to those who can "influence" the tide. The urgent need "to protect civilians" on the run "and ensure" access to the area under siege. " Opposition sources define Aleppo "one giant graveyard " as Assad's troops begin the "showdown".

     


    01/12/2016 - ASIA

    OPEC agree to reduce crude oil production for the first time in eight years


    The agreement was reached in Vienna. The Petroleum Exporting Countries will cut daily oil production of 1.2 million barrels. Even Russia, not in OPEC, will remove 300 thousand barrels from the market. Thefinal agreement possible thanks to the agreement  between the Iranians and Saudis.

     


    30/11/2016 - NEPAL

    Nepali authorities “bow” to illegal investment by an Indian guru

    by Christopher Sharma

    Baba Ramdev has invested 1.5 billion rupees (almost US$ 14 million) through an NGO she heads. Nepali laws establish tight controls on foreign funds, and the guru did not have the right permits. His popularity is being used to re-establish a Hindu confessional state.


    30/11/2016 - MYANMAR

    Kachin activists call for an end to the war and to illegal arrests


    The Joint Strategy Team (JST), which has provided humanitarian assistance in Kachin state since 2011, calls for an end to the fighting between government and rebel forces. The number of casualties is unknown but thousands of displaced people have sought refuge in China. People are in a dire situation but the military have blocked humanitarian aid.


    29/11/2016 - TURKMENISTAN – AFGHANISTAN

    First 85 kilometres of the TAT railway inaugurated


    The project seeks to link Turkmenistan, Afghanistan and Tajikistan. With a US$ 2 billion price tag, it is expected to increase international economic cooperation.


    29/11/2016 - JAPAN

    Avian flu outbreak in Japan, 330,000 chickens and ducks culled


    The virus was found on farms in two prefectures, but other cases might still be discovered elsewhere. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe immediately gave orders to implement health provisions as required in such circumstances.


    29/11/2016 - INDIA

    "Day of Rage" against rupees recall brings tens of thousands to streets


    The protest was mostly peaceful. Opposition parties have called upon the population to protest the recall of the most used banknote. Premier asks party colleagues to show their bank statements to dispel doubts of complicity.

     


    28/11/2016 - VIETNAM

    Pollution emergency destroys tourism in central Vietnam

    by Tran Vinh

    In some areas affected by the Formosa Plastics Group scandal, revenues are down by 90 per cent with thousands of jobs lost. Fishermen, small businesses and local artisans are especially at risk. Locals want the authorities to help people. Instead, they only reassure locals that the water is clean.


    28/11/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope says normative system to protect nature is "essential"


    Speaking to the Pontifical Academy of Sciences Francis returns to highlight how "the he submission of politics to a technology and an economy which seek profit" is demonstrated by the failure or delay in implementing the agreements on environmental protection or the "continued wars of domination camouflaged by righteous claims".


    28/11/2016 - SOUTH KOREA

    Park close to impeachment after large-scale demonstrations bring together 2 million people


    Opposition parties plan to present a motion in parliament in two-days time. Demonstrations take place in different South Korean cities. In Seoul alone, some 1.5 million people come together.


    28/11/2016 - BANGLADESH

    Gazipur, Catholic church burgled. Fear among the faithful

    by Sumon Corraya

    27/11/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope: Advent, the contrast between our daily routine and the sudden coming of the Lord


    In the first Angelus of Advent, Pope Francis said that "the Lord’s visit with humanity", at Christmas, also takes place "every day" and will occur when "He will come in glory to judge the living and the dead." "The Gospel does not want to frighten us, but for us to widen our horizons". "... Our Lady help us to not consider ourselves owners of our lives, not to resist when the Lord comes to change it".


    26/11/2016 - VATICAN

    Pope on economy of religious institutes: fidelity to charism and discernment


    In a message to 1000 general economists from institutes of consecrated life and societies of apostolic life, Pope Francis asks them to rethink their economic strategies never putting profits first rather fidelity to their charisma and self-giving. Reviewing their works, collaborating with other institutes and with the local Church, to implement a "responsible austerity". "The hypocrisy of consecrated persons who live like the rich  - he said - hurts the consciences of the faithful and damages the Church". 


    26/11/2016 - CUBA - VATICAN

    Fidel Castro, father of the Cuban revolution, has died


    His body will be cremated today. He led the island for 50 years. In 2008 he passed the presidency to his brother Raul. He attempted to export the Marxist revolution to Latin America and Africa. Some economic and social achievements at home, along with a heavy oppression of human rights. The disappearance of myth after the fall of the USSR. The Catholic Church and the Popes, catalysts of a transformation on the island nation.


    26/11/2016 - INDONESIA

    Jakarta stops national school exams: it costs too much and everyone copies

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    Middle and high school students spend months preparing for the Ujian Nasional. Too many cases of corruption and the disparity between the level of candidates from region to region.


    26/11/2016 - INDIA

    Manmohan Singh: Rupees recall a failure, legalized theft


    After more than two weeks, the situation for the poor and the middle class is worsening. Long queues at ATMs remain, protests and clashes have caused 70 deaths. Bankers caught stealing money suspended. Opposition parties propose the "day of rage".


    25/11/2016 - CHINA

    No fresh or live fish in Beijing might signal fresh food safety scandals


    Supermarket fish tanks are emptied. The China Food and Drug Administration plans inspections to check food safety. Food poisoning and safety issues boost fears among ordinary Chinese.


    25/11/2016 - UZBEKISTAN

    Interim President Mirziyaev frees two major political opponents


    Individuals were deemed “troublesome” by the previous government. After two months in office, interim President Shavkat Mirziyaev seems more "moderate" than his predecessor, Islam Karimov.


    25/11/2016 - LAOS

    Vientiane planning a new dam on the Mekong. Criticism from activists and neighboring countries


    The 912 megawatt Pak Beng hydroelectric plant would be the third managed by Vietiane, that aims to become the "battery of Asia." Mekong River Commission impeached, for facilitating Laos in the two previous projects: "This time we will ensure a more thorough review of the project". One of the richest ecosystems in the world at risk.

     


    25/11/2016 - ISRAEL - PALESTINE

    Israel fires: 80 thousand people evacuated. Netanyahu blames terrorism


    The city of Haifa in the north engulfed. Drought and strong winds in the region have fed the fires. The flames also lapping Jerusalem and part of the West Bank. At least 130 people hospitalized, most for intoxication. Police have opened an investigation, Shin Bet also involved. For Mahmoud Abbas Israel is exploiting the fires to blame Palestinians.

     


    24/11/2016 - ISRAEL - PALESTINE - UN

    UN: Israeli expansionism and divisions among Palestinians a danger to the Middle East


    Speaking to the Security Council Nickolay Mladenov describes an "increasingly worrying and dangerous situation" "Immobility" of the international community is costing "human lives and suffering." Israel raises an expansion project in east Jerusalem which includes the construction of 500 new homes.

     


    23/11/2016 - IRAQ

    "Adopt a Christian from Mosul": A Christmas gift to survive winter

    by Bernardo Cervellera

    As Iraqi troops advance in the Nineveh Plain and Mosul, a new wave of refugees could overshadow the fate of other refugees who found hospitality in Kurdistan. People need kerosene, winter clothes, aid for children, and money for rent. The campaign AsiaNews launched two years ago is more urgent than ever. Give up a superfluous gift to offer refugees an essential gift for life.


    23/11/2016 - IRAQ

    Pastor of Amadiya: Mosul’s Christian refugees, torn between emergency aid and the longing to return home

    by P. Samir Youssef

    In a letter Fr. Samir Youssef describes the situation of refugees, exiled from their home for more than two years. They are closely following the offensive to retake Mosul, although their homes and churches "are for the most part" burned or destroyed. With the arrival of winter there is a serve lack of heating oil, clothes, food and money to pay for their children’s school bus. An appeal to continue to support the AsiaNews campaign.


    22/11/2016 - SRI LANKA

    Hundreds of displaced people still without a home after blasts rocketed the Salawa army base

    by Melani Manel Perera

    In June, a huge fire damaged more than 2,000 homes. The owners of those with minor damages, about half of the total, were able to go home. The others still live in houses rented by the government. The authorities have paid for the houses but not for tools and furniture. Damage assessments undervalue losses. Many of those who lost their jobs as a result of the fire are still unemployed.


    22/11/2016 - SOUTH KOREA

    One million South Koreans demand resignation of President Park Geun-hye


    During the fourth weekend of protests, the South Korean people continue to crowd the streets of the capital. The presidential office rejects the prosecutors accusations, who say Park is an "accomplice" and "suspect".






    Editor's choices

    IRAQ
    "Adopt a Christian from Mosul": A Christmas gift to survive winter

    Bernardo Cervellera

    As Iraqi troops advance in the Nineveh Plain and Mosul, a new wave of refugees could overshadow the fate of other refugees who found hospitality in Kurdistan. People need kerosene, winter clothes, aid for children, and money for rent. The campaign AsiaNews launched two years ago is more urgent than ever. Give up a superfluous gift to offer refugees an essential gift for life.


    IRAQ
    Pastor of Amadiya: Mosul’s Christian refugees, torn between emergency aid and the longing to return home

    P. Samir Youssef

    In a letter Fr. Samir Youssef describes the situation of refugees, exiled from their home for more than two years. They are closely following the offensive to retake Mosul, although their homes and churches "are for the most part" burned or destroyed. With the arrival of winter there is a serve lack of heating oil, clothes, food and money to pay for their children’s school bus. An appeal to continue to support the AsiaNews campaign.


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