10/01/2014PAKISTAN - ISLAM Rawalpindi: a phone call from police behind (false) rumours about Zafar Bhatti's death by Jibran Khan Naureen, the pastor's sister, says police told the family about his murder in cell and then denied them the right to view the body. A church in the city conducted a funeral service. Family and Christian leaders met him in prison yesterday, and found him alive and in good health. Rawalpindi (AsiaNews)
- "I received a call from the police and they told me that my brother had
been killed in prison," Naureen Bhatti, sister of Rev Zafar Bhatti, told AsiaNews as she explained yesterday's
announcement of his "murder
in prison". Once alerted, the family "raced to the prison" to see the
victim's body and find out how he died; however, prison guards prevented them
from identifying the alleged...
10/01/2014IRAN Iran hangs man for heresy Mohsen Amir Aslani, a 37-year-old former psychologist, taught religion, giving a new interpretation of the Qur'an. The authorities also accused him of insulting the prophet Jonah.
10/01/2014INDIA New Delhi, state university abolishes chair named after Mother Teresa by Santosh Digal The Indira Gandhi Open University has taken this decision due to lack of funds. For John Dayal, secretary general of the All India Christian Council (AICC), terms the decision "reprehensible." The chair offered courses on HIV / AIDS, family education, substance abuse and philosophy.
10/01/2014HONG KONG - CHINA The "umbrella revolution": students turn their backs on flag raising for China’s National Day by Paul Wang The students boycotted the raising of the flag to mark the founding of the People's Republic of China. Some demand the release of political prisoners and recall Tiananmen. Leung Chun-ying keeps silent. China censors images and news reports on the demands of democracy. 13 Chinese who support Occupy Central arrested. Beijing warns embassies and consulates: do not interfere with the protesters. Support from Canada, Britain, Australia.
09/30/2014LAOS Persecution continues in Laos as Christians are detained for meeting to pray Authorities in Savannakhet raid home and arrest Christian clergyman and six members of his congregation. They were having lunch after Sunday Mass. At present, they are still being held at a government building. The clergyman was brought in handcuffed and shackled. Village authorities had banned Christians from praying together.
09/30/2014VATICAN - UNITED NATIONS It is "licit and urgent" to stop the aggression of terrorism, Card Parolin says at UN The Holy See's top diplomat calls for "multilateral action and a proportionate use of force" to ensure "the defence of unarmed citizens." The theory of the "clash of civilizations" ignores "longstanding and profound experiences of good relations between cultures, ethnic groups and religions". The path to follow is to "promote dialogue and understanding among cultures," as well as a sense of "responsibility to protect".
09/30/2014VATICAN Pope: Prepare and pray: the "things" to do ahead of our "dark times” "Our life is too easy, our complaints are overdramatized". Think of the great tragedies, of "these Christian brothers and sisters of ours who are driven from their home and left with nothing: 'But, Lord, I have believed in you. Why? Is believing in You a curse, Lord?'".
09/30/2014HONG KONG - CHINA Hong Kong Chief Executive calls for immediate end to protests. Occupy Central calls for his resignation by Paul Wang Day three of Occupy Central. Sit-ins extend to Yau Ma Tei and Des Voeux Road. Schools are still closed; 37 banks are closed. There is growing solidarity among population towards the demonstrators. Yesterday evening, tens of thousands of people were in the street. Last night in Mong Kok, a speeding car tried to crash into some of the demonstrators. Many commuters accept transport difficulties because they share the ideals of democracy. "Proud" to be Hong Kongers.
09/30/2014IRAQ Patriarch of Baghdad to Muslims: Condemn extremism, rebuild Iraq with Christians by Louis Raphael I Sako * On the occasion of Eid al-Adha, the Islamic festival of sacrifice, Mar Sako renews his call for "reconciliation" and "brave dialogue" for true peace. Tolerance, respect and justice to maintain "national identity" and "co-existence". The memory of Muslims who sacrificed themselves to save the Christians. He adds: "We love because Christ teaches us to love everyone."
09/29/2014HONG KONG - CHINA Day two of Occupy Central. Police violence comes under fire by Paul Wang The downtown streets are closed: Admiralty, Wan Chai, Causeway Bay. In Kowloon, Nathan Road, Mong Kok and Argyle Street closed. Schools and banks closed. The teachers union joins the strike. Overnight police used batons, spray, tear gas to disperse protesters, who are demanding the resignation of Leung Chun-ying. Beijing slams the movement as "illegal".
09/28/2014VATICAN Pope: "There is no future for people" without inter-generational encounter, when elderly are “discarded” Pope Benedict XVI, "the wise grandfather in the home” attends "The blessing of long life" event. "How often we discard the elderly with an attitude of abandonment that is real and concrete euthanasia". "Homes for the elderly are great ... as long as they are truly homes, not prisons!" The testimony of two elderly people who fled Iraqi Kurdistan: "abuse of the elderly is inhuman, just as it is of children."
09/28/2014HONG KONG - CHINA Occupy Central launches civil disobedience. Solidarity with arrested students by Paul Wang The announcement was made at 1.45am by Benny Lai, one of the leaders. Supporters present include Card. Joseph Zen, the Catholic politician Martin Lee, the entrepreneur Jimmy Lai. Three students, one 17 years old, remain in detention without aby charge. The governor Leung Chun-ying refuses to meet with students. Fears of police raids. Demonstrations in nine cities in support of democracy in Hong Kong. Silence of Xinhua news agency.