20 January 2018
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  • 20/01/2018 - UZBEKISTAN

    The victims were all Uzbeks. Yesterday, the repatriation of bodies. 30 of them have already been identified. "We still have a lot to do for our people" forced to look for work abroad.




    20/01/2018 - TURKEY -SYRIA

    Afrin, Ankara launches the campaign to 'eliminate' the Syrian Kurds


    The bombings until the late yesterday evening: the heaviest since Erdogan raised the alert level . A senior Turkish official went to Moscow to get approval to launch an area campaign. Damascus warns: we could take down your planes. 


    19/01/2018 - VATICAN – PERU

    Pope in Peru: Defending the Amazon, its land, its culture and above all its people


    Francis met today indigenous people whose land is threatened by business interests but also vy the type of conservationism that has no place for people. “I consider it essential to begin creating institutional expressions of respect, recognition and dialogue with the native peoples, acknowledging and recovering their native cultures, languages, traditions, rights and spirituality.”


    19/01/2018 - MIDDLE EAST – UNITED STATES

    Mike Pence’s (downsized) visit to the Middle East


    Announced more than a month ago, the US vice president’s visit will not include meetings with Palestinian leaders nor Christian religious figures as a result of the US decision on Jerusalem. The trip will only boost relations between the United States and Israel, as well as evangelicals and Jewish fundamentalists. For expert opinion, it would better if he stays home.


    19/01/2018 - INDIA

    Chhattisgarh withdraws law that would have allowed the seizure of tribal lands


    The legislation was dropped following protests by indigenous groups. The Church is on the side of the poor. Tribals make up about 28 per cent of the State’s population. About 15 per cent of India’s steel is produced in the State.


    19/01/2018 - KOREA

    Call to exempt tuberculosis medicines from sanctions against North Korea


    The Eugene Bell Foundation made the request during a press conference at South Korea’s National Assembly in Seoul. For years, the NGO has been helping in the treatment of North Korean patients with a thousand currently under care. Recently, North Korea’s Ministry of Public Health signed a memorandum with the Foundation aimed at “treating all the patients with multidrug-resistant TB in South Hwanghae Province.”


    19/01/2018 - ITALY-CHINA

    Zhang Naizhong, alleged Chinese mafia boss, arrested yesterday


    32 others arrested with him charged with extortion, prostitution, drug trafficking. He had established a quasi-monopoly of the transport of goods to Chinese companies in Europe. Amazement and silence in Prato.


    19/01/2018 - INDONESIA

    Papua, 61 children dead and 500 sick because malnourished. The Church's commitment (Photo)

    by Mathias Hariyadi

    The diocese of Agats sends two teams to assist and distribute basic necessities in the affected villages. The peculiar characteristics of the remote territory make it difficult and dangerous to reach the most isolated settlements. In Jakarta, some Catholic humanitarian organizations and groups have set up a fundraising program. The Indonesian government deploys military paramedics. Critics of the government, accused of neglecting the remote eastern province.


    19/01/2018 - RUSSIA-UKRAINE

    The two Churches in Ukraine and the bleeding child

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    New tensions between Ukrainian and pro-Russian nationalists, among the faithful of the Kiev Autonomous Patriarchate and Orthodox of obedience to the Moscow Patriarchate. The spark: the refusal of an Orthodox church in Moscow to officiate the funeral of a child who died in an accident, because he was baptized "a heretic" in the Church of Kiev. Monks of the two Churches blocked at the Kiev caves. Mutual violence towards sacred buildings.


    19/01/2018 - MYANMAR

    Ethnic violence in Rakhine: Buddhist parliamentarian arrested for 'high treason'


    The nationalist politician attacked the government and incited the Rakhine ethnic minority to armed struggle against the government. The arrest occurred two days after the clashes in Mrauk U, where seven local people lost their lives. A Rakhine rebel group promises "serious" retaliation for the demise of the protesters. 


    19/01/2018 - CHINA

    Official figures: the Chinese economy grew by 6.95 in 2017. But doubts remain


    Growth is greater than the government's forecasts. But analysts are sceptical that the figures have been manipulated. Standard & Poor's and the IMF are calling for reforms on state-owned companies, those that absorb the most credit and indebt the state.


    18/01/2018 - INDIA

    Winter Cricket Cup to keep kids away from drugs in Miao diocese


    Some 18 teams are involved in the sporting competition, which will last until 25 January. Organisers envisage holding the event on an annual basis. The “lack of guidance and a suppressed need to get recognised” are the main cause of drug addiction.


    18/01/2018 - CHINA

    Sichuan is the world hub of Bitcoin mining


    The province dominates bitcoin mining because of its abundant hydroelectric energy, which is perfect for energy-intensive supercomputers. Electricity in fact accounts for 60-70 per cent of plant costs. With 550 mining machines operating 24 hours, up to 2.5 Bitcoins can be mined per day, worth around US$ 6,400.


    18/01/2018 - THAILAND – MYANMAR

    Caritas Thailand defending the rights of migrant workers


    The country has one of the largest migrant population in all of Southeast Asia, some 4-5 million, plus about a million illegal migrants. A new law on undocumented workers came into effect on 1st January. Starting last June, workers from Myanmar, Cambodia, and Laos have been leaving in droves.


    18/01/2018 - INDIA

    Tamil Nadu, five gored to death in the 'Jallikattu' bull race


    The victims were watching the sporting event. Indian bullfighting is considered the oldest sport of modern times. The bullfighters do not use weapons, unlike the Spanish bullfighters.


    18/01/2018 - KOREA

    Kang Kyung-wha: we will continue to dialogue with North Korea with "clear eyes"


    Seoul knows Pyongyang "better than anyone" and wants to get "the best" from the meetings in progress. The two Koreas will march under a single flag and will have a joint female hockey team.


    17/01/2018 - HONG KONG-CHINA

    Joshua Wong sentenced to three months in prison

    by Paul Wang

    The Occupy Central activist guilty, along with 14 others, of contempt of court for blocking clearance of a protest site. Wong may present himself in the parliamentary elections.  Beijing pushes for maximum sentence. " They can lock up our bodies but they can't lock up our minds".


    17/01/2018 - US-PALESTINE

    The US cuts funding to UN agency for Palestinian refugees


    65 million dollars frozen. Appeal of the commissioner general: "The most dramatic financial crisis in the history of UNWRA". UNRWA deals with refugees, particularly in Gaza. The United States is the largest donor. Tensions between Abbas and Trump after the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. 


    17/01/2018 - MALAYSIA - EU

    Kuala Lumpur, farmers protest against EU palm oil ban


    The EU intends to ban its use in biofuels by 2021 due to concerns about the environmental impact. Malaysia is the second largest producer in the world. Over 650,000 small farmers and more than 3.2 million Malaysians depend on the palm oil industry.


    17/01/2018 - RUSSIA

    Putin: Lenin's 'relics'. Communism and its Christian origins

    by Vladimir Rozanskij

    In a recent film interview, the "most orthodox" of Russian president’s tries to link early Christianity, Valaam's monasticism, communism and Lenin, as unified components of the Russian soul. The Orthodox barter: Lenin's burial for the recognition of the relics of Tsar Nicholas.


    16/01/2018 - ISRAEL

    For Israel’s Catholic leaders, society’s welfare cannot come at the expense of expellable migrants


    The religious leaders call for "more humane solutions". Indifference towards the suffering of those who flee dictatorships and wars is not acceptable. God urges us to treat "resident aliens" among us as “native- born".


    16/01/2018 - BANGLADESH – MYANMAR

    Rohingya to be repatriated within two years

    by Sumon Corraya

    The agreement involves 156,000 refugees who fled in 2016 and 2017. Myanmar will take back 1,500 Rohingya per week. To do so, it is building a temporary camp for 30,000 people.


    16/01/2018 - CHINA

    Human rights lawyer Wang Quanzhang held by police for two and a half years

    by Wang Zhicheng

    He is the only prisoner whose fate remains unknown. The prison in Tianjin won’t let his wife and lawyers see him. In the past, Wang defended Falun Gong members and farmers displaced from their land. Torture and phoney confessions are routine.


    16/01/2018 - INDIA

    Madhya Pradesh, Hindu prayers in Catholic schools: a nationalist leader arrested (Video)

    by Nirmala Carvalho

    Upadhesh Rana is the head of the Vishwa Sanathan Sangh. The St. Mary Post Graduate College defended by more than 500 policemen. The St. Paul Convent School in the district of Ratlam attacked and vandalized by members of the Shri Rajput Karni Sena.


    16/01/2018 - ISRAEL - PALESTINE

    Extended detention for Ahed Tamimi, the teenager who slapped a soldier


    It is the fourth time that her detention has been extended. She had become famous with a viral video in which she smacked a soldier. The lawyer: the rights of the child are being violated.


    16/01/2018 - PHILIPPINES

    Mount Mayon eruption: Alert level 3 and 15 thousand displaced


    There are five alert levels. In the event of an alert four, forced evacuations planned in view of a "possible dangerous eruption". The red zone extended to seven kilometers radius from the crater. 2,462 meters high, Mount Mayon is popular with climbers and tourists. Over the past 500 years, the volcano has erupted 50 times. In 1814, it killed 1,200 people and buried the city of Cagsawa.


    16/01/2018 - CHINA

    Record profits for Chinese state-owned companies. Too good to be true?


    The State Administration Commission reports a 23.4% increase in profits. The result of the government led reforms: reduction of overproduction and mixed ownership to improve the efficiency of state industries. But the question of the credibility of the statistics remains. The case of the city of Baotou.


    15/01/2018 - KOREA

    Olympics, new meeting between the two Koreas. Consensus grows among South Koreans


    Pyongyang's participation at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics is being prepared. On the 20th there will be the meeting with the International Olympic Committee. Many logistical aspects to be analyzed. Since January 9, 64% of online comments on South Korean sites are positive. 


    15/01/2018 - LEBANON - SYRIA

    Caritas Lebanon: The refugee crisis is increasing, citizens increasingly poor


    UN: "More vulnerable than ever", more than half in conditions of "extreme poverty". The increasing "uncertainty" of aid. Fr. Paul Karam: At least 28% of Lebanese below the poverty line. We must "encourage" the peace process in Syria, the war will have "consequences for the next 50 years".


    15/01/2018 - IRAQ

    Baghdad, twin bombing leaves 26 dead and 90 wounded. Msgr. Warduni: destabilizing acts


    Central sector of the capital targeted. Day labourers gather in the areas waiting for call up. Interior sources: Death toll destined to increase. Auxiliary of Baghdad: Tensions fuelled by delay in budget approval and the next parliamentary elections, scheduled for May.






    Editor's choices

    EGYPT – LEBANON
    Muslims and Christians meet in Cairo for Jerusalem, 'the cause of causes'

    Fady Noun

    A conference was held on 16-17 January at al-Azhar. Many prominent figures from Lebanon took part, including the Maronite Patriarch Bechara Al-Rahi. The Arab world is divided between "complicit passivity" and "noisy but ineffective speeches". For a former Lebanese premier, coordinated actions are needed to ensure greater efficacy on behalf of Jerusalem’s "pluralistic identity " and "religious freedom". Card Al-Rahi called for joint prayers, Islamic-Christian interfaith solidarity in the Arab world, and support for the Palestinians.


    CHINA
    Yunnan: Christians accused of membership in an apocalyptic sect get up to 13 years in prison



    The Three Grades of Servants cult, an underground pseudo-Protestant sect founded in Henan, is especially strong in the countryside. Those convicted claim they are just ordinary Christians and know nothing about the sect. Defense lawyers have been threatened with loss of their license to practice.


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