On the eve of the Assembly that opens in Rome and where two of its own bishops will also be present, the Catholic Church in Vietnam sent a message to the faithful indicating the theme of enhancing the mission of the laity in 2024. "In Vietnam, due to historical circumstances, combined with difficult living conditions and a misunderstanding of doctrine, some live their faith passively. But the heritage of faith transmitted by the blood of the martyrs is entrusted to each of us".

by John Ai

Chen Siming, 60, commemorates the Tiananmen massacre in Hunan every year and has already been arrested for it. Threatened with internment in a psychiatric hospital in July, he escaped clandestinely to Laos and then to Thailand, countries that are no longer safe for Chinese dissidents. He applied for protection during a stopover in Taipei with a plane ticket to Guangzhou. Taiwan does not have a refugee law, more likely to accept the request from a third country.

| 23/09/2023
by Stefano Caprio

Kadirov's illness and Azerbaijani Aliev's coup sweeping away the Armenian enclave dominated the week. While Baku makes Europe weigh the strength it has acquired at Moscow's expense in the gas market, the Kremlin leaves it at that, accusing the Armenians of having flirted too much with the West. Russia is trying not to lose the Caucasus, its 'Middle Eastern side' as well as Ukraine.

| 23/09/2023

So far, 3,300 people have been reported dead in Derna, but the final toll might top 20,000. At least 43,000 have been displaced. The investigation by Libyan authorities suggests that the tragedy was compounded by the failure of a Turkish company to complete repair work on the collapsed dams. Turkey’s presence in Libya is but a small part of its growing economic and political footprint in Africa.

| 22/09/2023
by Sumon Corraya

Some 500 people, mostly members of the country’s religious minorities, will stop eating to protest the failure of the ruling Awami League to protect minority rights, which is driving many out of the country. For Nirmol Rozario, a Catholic, the hunger strike is a way “to defend our existence”.


| 22/09/2023
by Alessandra De Poli

The new law, titled Saluting Women Power Act, reserves a third of lower house seats to women, but it is still not clear whether it will really improve women’s representation in politics. Reservation for women and disadvantaged groups impinged upon each other. Women play a major role in local politics, but are far fewer in higher levels of government because of the amount of time and money needed, and the role played by family connections.

| 22/09/2023
by Chiara Zappa

From Algeria and Lebanon to Jerusalem to Morocco, bishops and young people of different faiths reach out to each other at a crossroads of migration to imagine new paths of coexistence, starting in La Solidarité, a neighbourhood where 90% of the residents are of North African and Sub-Saharan origin. The pontiff will be given the Manifesto for a Theology from the Mediterranean drafted by representatives from 17 institutions located on the five shores of the sea.

| 22/09/2023
Editor's choices
Bishop Yang Yongqiang of Zhouchun and Yao Shun of Jining are on the list of members released today a couple of weeks before the synod opens. They were picked by the local Church in agreement with the authorities and appointed by Pope Francis.
| 21/09/2023
by Dario Salvi
The cardinal relects on the the tumultuous weeks since the withdrawal of the presidential decree under pressure from self-styled leaders (in the pay of Tehran). A  "more subtle" threat hangs over the community, but with the same logic as Isis: drive ...
| 19/09/2023
by Alessandra De Poli
In August, the UN Food and Agriculture Agency reported a 9.8 per cent price hike over July despite an overall drop in food prices. Rice is vulnerable to extreme climate events, like those that devastated Pakistan and China last year, but the recent increase ...
| 12/09/2023
The archbishop of Bologna continues the mission entrusted to him by Pope Francis. If, as some media reports suggest, he will meet Premier Li Qiang, this will be the first high-level meeting between a top Church official and the head of government of ...
| 12/09/2023
During Biden's visit, Vietnam announced a historic strategic partnership with the United States almost 50 years after the Vietnam War. Since 2017, many big tech companies have left China in favour of its communist neighbour in Southeast Asia, investing ...
| 11/09/2023
by Andrea Lembo *
At the funeral of the auxiliary bishop of Tokyo, the PIME missionary, who replaced him at the helm of the Shinsei Kaikan Catholic Cultural Centre, remembered the prelate who loved to refer to God through the typically Japanese image of hot spring water. ...
| 06/09/2023
On the same day that Pope Francis praised Mongolian culture and traditions, the authorities in China’s Inner Mongolia region, where a fifth of the population is Mongolian, described them as “historical nihilism” in the name of sinicisation. ...
| 05/09/2023
by Gianni Criveller *
Fr. Gianni Criveller, PIME missionary and sinologist, comments on the words addressed by the pope yesterday to the Chinese people from Mongolia, with Card. Tong and Cardinal-designate Chow. "There is no contradiction between being good Christians and ...
| 04/09/2023
“L’Asia: ecco il nostro comune compito per il terzo millennio!” - Giovanni Paolo II, da “Alzatevi, andiamo”