03/04/2015INDIA Religious freedom increasingly at risk in India as new attacks are perpetrated against Christians by Nirmala Carvalho In Rajasthan, police beat 20 Christians for handing out leaflets. In Madhya Pradesh, a group of rightwing Hindus disrupted a local Pentecostal prayer service. For the Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC), "India is a secular democracy, not a theocracy." Mumbai (AsiaNews) - India's Christian communities have suffered new
attacks, casting doubts over the status of religious freedom in the country.
The Global Council of Indian Christians (GCIC) has reported two...
03/04/2015INDIA Maharashtra bans beef: 5 years in prison for those who eat it The law on the slaughter, consumption and sale of cows, bulls and steers approved after 19 years. 80% of the country's population is Hindu, a religion that worships the cow. Major consequences for the Muslim community, responsible for beef trade. Christian Association: "Religion is something personal, and the government should not mix it with their norms".
03/04/2015VIETNAM 155 Catholic students denied school access over land dispute For six months hundreds of families have been unable to send their children - between 4 and 15 years of age - to school. The authorities have imposed a transfer to a school 30 km away. For three years there has been a clash between Catholics and authorities over the forced displacement of a thousand families. But some of them resisted.
03/03/2015CAMBODIA - VIETNAM Cambodia deports 36 Vietnamese Montagnards, fleeing persecution The group was stopped in a forested area north-east of the capital. A Cambodian, an ethnic Charai who led the group, was also arrested. Vietnamese and Cambodian police were involved in the joint operation that led to repatriation of the refugees.
03/03/2015NEPAL Hindu fundamentalists threatened peace and stability in Nepal by Christopher Sharma Deputy Prime Minister Bamdev Gautam presents a security report to parliament. The authorities have stepped up surveillance of radical and monarchist groups. Some leftwing and separatist groups are also a danger.
03/03/2015EGYPT - ISLAM Bombs, elections, and convictions on Egypt's path by André Azzam A bomb attack yesterday in Cairo killed two people and wounded nine. Two more people died two days ago in Aswan. Many praise al-Sisi's iron fist; others criticise him for being illiberal. The elections planned for March and May were postponed after the Constitutional Court declared unconstitutional the existing election law. Some Islamists get the death penalty and a number of Arab spring protesters get heavy prison sentences. The president of the Federation of Protestant Churches believes in a better future for Egypt.
03/03/2015CHINA China sets its sights on economies of Central Asia Beijing is investing in the manufacturing sector in Kazakhstan. Tajikistan receives $ 200 million from Beijing to for lead extraction. China’s goal is to limit Russian influence in Central Asia. Experts say China wants to infiltrate the vast market of the Eurasian Economic Union and contain the threat of terrorism in Xinjiang.
03/02/2015PAKISTAN Lahore: 'charity travels' for a Lent of prayer and sharing by Kamran Chaudhry Each year, the archdiocese offers its members a number of day-trips to some of the country's places of suffering (and hope): homes for the mentally disabled, orphanages, centres for troubled children, as well as Mariamabad, one of the most beloved Marian shrine in the whole of South Asia. At the Dar ul-Karishma Centre, the Sisters of Charity welcome people with psychiatric problems.
03/02/2015BANGLADESH Bangladesh holds man over blogger Avijit Roy's murder by Sumon Corraya The suspect had been arrested previously for inciting attacks against writers and intellectuals. The murder victim, a US citizen of Bangladeshi origin, was hacked to death with a machete. Islamist extremists threatened publicly to kill him last year after the publication of his book 'Biswasher Virus,' Bengali for 'Virus of faith'.
03/01/2015VATICAN Pope: Let us not forget those who are suffering in Syria, Iraq and Venezuela; let us pray for them Francis comments the Gospel of the Transfiguration of Christ. "Jesus reveals himself as the perfect icon of the Father, the irradiation of his glory. It is the fulfilment of revelation. [. . .] Jesus' journey always leads us to happiness [. . .]. Love transfigures everything." The task he leaves for the disciples and the faithful is simple: "Listen to and follow the Saviour." After the Marian prayer, the Holy Father issued an appeal to the peoples of the Middle East, noting that "We are praying insistently for an end to the intolerable brutality of which they are victims."
02/27/2015NEPAL Nepal's Supreme Court rules against civil war amnesty The court struck down the amnesty provisions of a law favourable to those who committed serious human rights abuses during the civil war. The government promises to respect the court's decision. Between 1996 and 2006, more than 17,000 people were killed, 1,300 disappeared. Thousands more were displaced.
02/27/2015INDIA No more attacks on Mother Teresa, "beloved by India and the world". by Anthony Charangat* In an editorial Fr. Charangat, Director of Communications and Media for the Archdiocese of Mumbai, criticizes statements made by the head of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Accusing the founder of the Missionaries of Charity of helping the poor to get them to convert is "an arrogant, incorrect, misleading, malicious act and done in bad faith". "The Catholic Church does not recognize conversions made by force or deception".
02/27/2015ISRAEL Arson attack against Greek Orthodox seminary in Jerusalem Jewish extremists are the main suspects. Disparaging phrases about Jesus were found on the building's walls, some identical to graffiti found on a mosque set on fire a few days ago. Israeli President Reuven Rivlin expresses his sadness at the incident, whilst Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat called it "deplorable".