10/09/2015SAUDI ARABIA - INDIA Saudi employer severs hand of Indian domestic worker. She was often tortured and abused The Delhi government protests with Riyadh and demands justice for Kasturi Munirathinam , who has hospitalized in serious condition and also has spinal injuries. No official comment from the Saudi government. Riyadh (AsiaNews / Agencies) – India’s foreign minister has raised an official protest with the Saudi Arabian authorities, following the "brutal" attack against a 58 year-old Indian woman in Riyadh....
10/09/2015SRI LANKA Sri Lanka, trade unions and activists defend domestic workers by Melani Manel Perera The project launched on the occasion of the Day for Dignified Work. Union: "Domestic workers are exposed to violence and abuse by employers." The purpose of the project is "give them value, dignity, protection and respect."
10/08/2015VATICAN Synod: the West must “not forget the Christians in the Middle East,” says Patriarch Younan Responding to a question about a “hermeneutic of conspiracy” attributed to the pope, Vatican spokesman Fr Lombardi said, “Clearly, the concept is that we should not believe in conspiracies. We should see the Synod as a process of exchange, and communication, taking place in peace and sincerity, not as something driven by special interests or attempts to manipulate".
10/08/2015INDIA Intellectuals condemn beef lynching as Modi boosts Hindutva Writer Nayantara Sahgal and poet Ashok Vajpeyi return the prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award. Indian president and Home minister speak out for diversity, tolerance and plurality in India. Politicians from the Bharatiya Janata Party instead make statements fomenting sectarian hate. The prime minister tightens beef export controls. Opposition parties, particularly Congress, fail to counter sectarian violence in the country.
10/08/2015INDONESIA Family planning is a good thing, not abortion and contraceptives by Mathias Hariyadi Members of the Catholic Church in Indonesia are in favour of government family planning, as long as it promotes “responsible parenthood." Started by Suharto in the 1970s, family planning had fallen by the wayside after 1998. Now the government wants to cut population growth, deemed a burden on the economy.
10/08/2015VIETNAM Following Francis, the Vietnamese Church promises help and hospitality to migrants by Paul N. Hung Modernisation and industrialisation have driven millions of people to the big cities. The Bishops' Conference calls for openness to these "brothers and sisters" in difficult conditions. Parishes are tasked to provide pastoral care. For Vietnamese bishop, migrants must be "helped, supported, loved and encouraged”.
10/08/2015PAKISTAN Pakistan’s Supreme Court confirms death sentence for murderer of Salman Taseer by Skafique Khokhar The Governor of Punjab was murdered for defending Asia Bibi. Lawyers killer ask for presidential pardon. The culprit has defended "legitimacy" of murder. Catholic activist: "The judgment shows that the Court is independent and free from the extremists pressures." Analyst warns: "The government will face pressure to avoid carrying out the judgment."
10/08/2015PHILIPPINES Del Torchio kidnapping: "May not be Islamist groups" Fr. Giovanni Re, PIME regional superior in the Philippines, says that "it is more likely to be groups looking for ransom, as often happens before elections." The area of Mindanao "is still one of the most dangerous. We take precautions but sometimes kidnappings occur even in quiet areas ". Some classmates of the former missionary describe him as "a person of great sensitivity and practical skills. Intuitive and resourceful ".
10/08/2015YEMEN - SAUDI ARABIA Yemen air strike hits wedding party: at least 15 dead and 25 wounded The raid took place in the late afternoon yesterday. Private home hit in Sanban, about 100 km south-east of Sana'a, under the control of the Houthi rebels. No comment from Riyadh, but Saudi-led coalition behind the attack. Humanitarian emergency: 80% of the population is at risk of hunger, at least 2,300 civilian casualties.
10/07/2015EGYPT Egypt is changing: burqa ban, Qur’anic exegesis, equal rights for Muslims and Christians For Fr Greiche, spokesman for the Catholic Church, the government has taken significant steps that are starting to spread to the population. They include a ban on the burqa in universities, and exegetical attempts to reread Islam’s holy book. Building will soon begin on the ‘Martyrs Church’ dedicated to the Copts beheaded by the Islamic State group in Libya.