» 06/08/2004, 00.00
SAUDI ARABIA ITALY USA
Free detained Christian and reformist Muslims
Rome(AsiaNews/FH) A campaign for the liberation of Brian Savio O'Connor has recently begun. O'Connor, who was arrested 6 months ago by the Saudi religious police (Muttawa), is now being held in the Olaya prison in Riyadh. The Muttawa have accused O'Connor of drug and alcohol peddling and of preaching Christianity. The prisoner's family declared that the drug charges are mere fabrications.
An Italian web-site, Stranocristiano, has appealed to the Saudi authorities for the liberation of O'Connor. This e-campaign is grounded on the letter that the Indian activist John Dayal recently wrote to king Fahad. "We join John Dayal in requesting the liberation of Brian O'Connor. Religious freedom is a universal right. A country that does not grant such right is not a civilised country".
Christians are not the only ones to be persecuted in Saudi Arabia. The Washington-based Saudi Institute gave the news of the arrest on March 15 of 11 Saudi citizens. All of them are Muslims who were active as voices for tolerance and human rights. Among the prisoners there are Abdulla Al-Hamad, a professor at Imam Mohamed bin Al-Saud University, Mohammed Said Al-Taib, a human rights activist, and Najeeb Al-Khanizee, a writer and political activist. Another human rights activist, Abdul-Rahman Alahim, was arrested on March 17 after appearing the day before on Al-Jazeera satellite television, calling upon the government to release all political detainees. Some of the prisoners were released three days ago, but seven others remain in the General Intelligence prison in Riyadh.
According to information received from the Saudi Institute, these activists were reportedly arrested for criticizing the lack of independence of the Saudi National Commission on Human Rights. They have also been accused of actively participating over the last two years in peaceful activities calling upon the government to take steps towards political reform, democracy, and respect for human rights. The Saudi Interior Ministry has agreed to release the detainees only on the condition that they sign a pledge to cease their campaign to reform the political and human rights situation in Saudi Arabia.
09/06/2004 SAUDI ARABIA Italy
Solidarity for poor O'Connor, the Christian tortured by the Saudi police
Interview to M.P. Mario Scajola, president of the Italian division of the World Muslim League (Rome)
24/09/2004 SAUDI ARABIA
New false accusations brought in court against O'Connor, an Indian-born Christian
Details about the arrest point to a plot by Islamic police against the Christian man who has been in jail for the last six months on charges of "evangelisation".
25/11/2004 SAUDI ARABIA
Christians arrested and persecuted in Saudi Arabia
Riyadh prisons are full of Christians but also Shiites and 'heretical' Sufi practitioners.
25/11/2004 SAUDI ARABIA
The 'Save O'Connor' campaign, an example of Internet solidarity
03/06/2005 SAUDI ARABIA
Families of Christians arrested in Riyadh appeal to international community
The pregnant wife of one of the detainees demands her husband's release so that they can both leave the country. Speaking by phone, prisoners tell stories about every kind of torture and abuse.
Pope: together with the faithful in China on 24 May to celebrate Our Lady of Sheshan
During the Regina Caeli, Pope Francis speaks about the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China, instituted by Benedict XVI. Chinese Catholics must make a “personal contribution to communion among believers and to harmony in the whole society." AsiaNews Symposium on the Church in China is set for this week. Francis appeals for peace in the Central African Republic, and for loving “one another following the example of the Lord”. For him, “Sometimes conflicts, pride, envy, and divisions leave a blotch on the beautiful face of the Church.” Five new cardinals will be named, including a bishop from Laos.
May 24, 2017: 'China, the Cross is Red', AsiaNews Symposium
The event will be held to mark the World Day of Prayer for the Church in China. A title with many meanings: the Cross is red from the blood of the martyrs; From attempts to suffocate the faith with state control; Bceause of the contribution of hope that Christianity gives to a population tired of materialism and consumerism that is seeking new moral criteria. The theme is also about the great and unexpected religious rebirth in the country. Guests to include: Card. Pietro Parolin, Msgr. Savio Hon, the sociologist of religions Richard Madsen, the testimonies of Chinese priests and laity.
24/05/2017 CHINA- VATICAN
19/05/2017 BANGLADESH - SAUDI ARABIA
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