» 04/16/2012, 00.00
Hanoi authorities and police assault Catholic orphanage, a priest in a coma
The raid took place shortly after midnight on April 14. Structure devastated, children beaten, Fr. Nguyen Van Binh, who spoke out in defense of the young guests seriously injured,. He was admitted unconscious, then taken to the archdiocesan curia. The faithful denounce the latest violation of religious freedom.
- A group of thugs, with the cooperation of the police, stormed a Christian
orphanage in Hanoi, damaging the building and even beating the children who are
guests of the center. The
thugs seriously injured a priest, who spoke out in defense of innocent young
victims. He was rushed to a hospital in the capital, unconscious from the blows
received to the head during the raid. The
local Catholic community have denounced the latest episode of persecution
operated with the connivance of the communist authorities and appeal to the
archdiocese and the Church hierarchy, to strongly denounce the violation of
human rights and religious freedom in the country.
told AsiaNews that on the morning of
14 April, the police of the town of Thuy Tien Xuân and local authorities in
Chuong My district, Hanoi, sent a group of thugs to attack a Catholic orphanage
in the capital, the Agape Family. The
structure is supported by the work of Catholic volunteers and the active
contribution of Fr. Nguyen
Van Binh, vicar of the parish of Yên Kien, in the Archdiocese of Hanoi. The
assailants have escaped unscathed, thanks to police cover.
to reports, shortly after midnight the thugs cut the electricity of the center,
then they started throwing stones and objects to scare the children. A
neighbor, on condition of anonymity, said that "they hit the altar of the
Madonna. A child was carried away" and when he tried to rebel "they took
him repeatedly slapping him in the face". Later
"at least 200 policemen arrived" to help the mob destroy the Agape
After learning of the
attack, Fr. Nguyen
Van Binh immediately ran to the orphanage but was struck several times by
police with batons. He
suffered severe head injuries (pictured) and fell into a coma. At
first he was transported to hospital in Chuong My, then transferred to a hospital
Vietnamese-German structure in Đức Viet, in a life-threatening condition. Faithful were also wounded
in the attack. In
the early afternoon of April 14, the priest returned to the Hanoi Archbishop's
Curia, to be treated "strictly in private".
told AsiaNews that Fr. Nguyễn
was very active in the care of disadvantaged children. "The
government - he added - must respect and encourage these charitable activities.
In contrast, the local communist authorities prevented him and destroyed the
faithful appeals to the leaders of the archdiocese of Hanoi and the Committee
for Justice and Peace of the Vietnamese Church to denounce the latest episode
of the violation of Christians' rights in the country.
(J.B. An Dang collaborated)
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