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    » 09/29/2014, 00.00


    Card. Tong: Enough violence in Central, government must put the people first

    An "Urgent Appeal" from the bishop of the Territory to the executive: "Exercise restraint in deployment of force with a view to listening to the voice of the younger generation and of citizens from all walks of life”. Card. Joseph Zen, is on the streets with Occupy Central.

    Hong Kong (AsiaNews) - The government of Hong Kong must " put the personal safety of fellow citizens as her prime concern," limiting the use of force and try to listen to the young people. This is the "urgent appeal" expressed by the bishop of the Territory, Card. John Tong Hon, published this morning after violent clashes in recent days and yesterday in the city center.

    Although always having called for calm and dialogue, the Catholic Church in Hong Kong is united in its support of the people's demands for democracy. In July of 2013, the diocese has published a lengthy document in which it seeks universal suffrage for the election of the chief executive planned for 2017. If this is not granted by Beijing then "civil disobedience is justified".

    One of the most committed public figures to support the demands of the Occupy Central democratic movement is the Bishop Emeritus Card. Joseph Zen Ze-kiun. After marching to invite people to participate in the referendum on democracy and having delivered several public speeches in favor of "one man, one vote," the prelate is now right in the heart of the financial district of Hong Kong along with the protesters. Here, along with a group of Catholics, he held a moment of prayer (see photo). Below is the full text of Card. Tong's appeal.

    With reference to the regrettable events at Central, Admiralty and Wanchai over the past few days, may I sincerely call upon the Hong Kong SAR Government to put the personal safety of fellow citizens as her prime concern, exercising restraint in deployment of force with a view to listening to the voice of the younger generation and of citizens from all walks of life.

    It is also my sincere wish that all those who are trying to voice out their grievances will be persistent in keeping calm. Where there is a will, there is a way.

    As Christians, we believe that with God as its Creator, our world can always offer us hope. Accordingly, I would like to ask all Christians to continue praying for the reconciliation of the conflicting parties in Hong Kong, and for the peace and wellbeing of our Community.



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    See also

    13/06/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Card. Zen and Democrats urge participation in referendum. Protests against Beijing's "White Paper"
    For the cardinal, participating in the referendum is a way to express the dignity of Hong Kong's people, against those who want to repress or enslave them. The Democrats cancel a meeting with Beijing's representative in the Territory. The White Paper states that Beijing's authority is more important than Hong Kong's "high degree of autonomy" promised by the Basic Law. Judges also have to be submitted as "patriotic administrators." Demonstrators accuse Beijing of considering the Basic Law "waste paper" or "toilet paper".

    24/10/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA - VATICAN
    Pope Francis encourages Card Zen, "the one who fights with a 'sling'"
    After Pope Paul VI's beatification Mass, Hong Kong's Bishop Emeritus met Francis in the parvis. He was prepared to tell the Pope, "Holy Father, I come from the "battlefield" in Hong Kong", but "before I could speak, he laughed and said, 'Ah! Ah! This is the one who fight with a 'sling'. [. . .] He knew David defeated the Giant Goliath. He was encouraging me." Addressing students, he said that neither youth nor force would lead to victory, only God's help will.

    07/10/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Card Zen stands with Hong Kong students, united for democracy, "until we are either dispersed or arrested"
    Tonight, the cardinal will spend the night with the students demonstrating in Admiralty. The talks proposed by the government are a trick to divide the pro-democracy movement. It would be better to pull back now after scoring two victories, namely getting people to demonstrate en masse for democracy, and forcing Beijing to show its true face. Interview with Hong Kong's bishop emeritus, a great champion of democracy and religious freedom.

    09/06/2014 HONG KONG - CHINA
    Card Zen on 84 hour march for democracy referendum in Hong Kong
    The Referendum (unofficial) will be held on 20-22 June. Catholic groups will accompany Card. Zen. March made even more difficult by soaring seasonal temperatures. Support of Card. Tong. Zhou Nan, former Xinhua director, calls for Chinese military intervention to prevent Occupy Central proclaiming the territory’s independence.

    19/06/2015 HONG KONG – CHINA
    For Card Tong, the Church will continue to promote democracy in Hong Kong
    After the Legislative Council voted down Beijing’s election reform package, Hong Kong’s Cardinal Tong calls for healing and prayer to overcome polarisation. Pro-Beijing lawmakers apologise to Hong Kongers, one weeps.

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