Rubric China

China
by card. Anthony Poola *

The Archbishop of Hyderabad looks at the media reaction to the declaration released by the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith on human dignity. The media are “focused on gender theory, sex change, surrogacy etc., but” people who “struggle with poverty, exploitation, discrimination, lack of access to primary healthcare” cannot leave others indifferent.

| 11/04/2024
| INDIA

Pictures, images, and activities that undermine national unity or promote a "separatist ideology" are banned. The Chinese government has long sought to control the choice of Tibet’s next spiritual leader. For his part, 88-year-old Tenzin Gyatso says he is in good health and wants to “live for more than 100 years.” Meanwhile, the fate of the Panchen Lama remains an unsolved mystery.

| 11/04/2024
| RED LANTERNS
by John Ai

Founder of a Chinese propaganda website. Meanwhile, the Czech Republic is considering expelling a Chinese diplomat for following Taiwanese Vice President-elect Hsiao Bi-khim during her visit to Prague in March.

| 10/04/2024
| CHINA - EUROPE
by John Ai

The US Treasury Secretary in China for the second visit in a few months: the issue of Chinese 'overproduction' in the field of renewable energy on the table. The People's Republic is counting on exports of solar panels, electric vehicles and lithium batteries to tackle its economic crisis and fears the imposition of duties.  

| 05/04/2024
| CHINA - UNITED STATES

Bishop Philip Huang Chao-ming of Hualien, near the epicentre of the 7+ quake, offers words of comfort. Some buildings are partially collapsed. Nine people are confirmed dead, while more than a hundred are still missing. For Fr Matteucig, a Taipei-based missionary, “A lot has really changed since 1999 in terms of prevention”, thus limiting damages and casualties. Mainland China has offered to help, but Taiwan said there is no need.

| 03/04/2024
| TAIWAN
by John Ai

Their boat capsized at Easter. In the past three years, the number of Chinese citizens seeking asylum in the United States has increased: 52,000 last year alone. Washington's stricter immigration policy has not stopped the tide of migrants. Even some middle-class Chinese are joining the perilous journey to the USA.

| 01/04/2024
| CHINA - UNITED STATES
by John Ai

The Chinese president reassures of 'ample room for development' even for US companies, which are worried about the implications of the increasingly tightening mesh imposed by 'national security' laws and the crisis in the Chinese economy. Meanwhile, Beijing itself only plans 'national options' for the operating systems of government computers and servers.

| 28/03/2024
| CHINA

She was arrested for defending Wang Yu, a younger colleague who was one of the main victims of the 9 July 2015 crackdown, one of the harshest on activists in China. Despite her age, she served her full sentence, six years and six months, for “picking quarrels and provoking trouble”.

| 25/03/2024
| CHINA
by John Ai

The latest report by the EU Chamber of Commerce in China laments the difficulties created by the increasing presence of politics in the economy. National security seems more important than China's growth. Xi Jinping is planning a visit to France in May to mend fences.

| 22/03/2024
| CHINA
by John Ai

At least six people have been killed and many more injured in different attacks in Beijing, Shenyang, and at a school in Zhejiang province. The authorities have not released too many details, but images from the attacks have been widely shared online. Several commentators in social media blame anger against society created by economic issues.

| 20/03/2024
| CHINA

Every lawmaker spoke in support of the new legislation implementing Article 23, which imposes life in prison in case of insurrection and grants police exceptional powers. Set to come into force this Saturday, the bill’s quick approval highlights the power of Hong Kong’s Chief Executive John Lee. After the vote, Lee called it a “historic day”, protection from a “colour revolution”. For him, “there must be one country before two systems”.

| 19/03/2024
| HONG KONG

A tragedy in Hebei is the first case to be tried under 2020 rules that lowered the minimum age for criminal responsibility to 12. Both the victim and the perpetrators are children of internal migrants, "left behind" with their grandparents in rural areas.

 

| 18/03/2024
| CHINA

Some defendants are given seven years in prison over the storming of Hong Kong’s Legislative Council. Chief Executive John Lee wants the latter to approve by 31 March the legislation to implement Article 23 of Hong Kong’s constitution. The Diocese of Hong Kong issues a statement saying that the secrecy of confession will be upheld under the new law. By allowing police to detain a suspect for up to 16 days without charge, the bill is violating the right to legal counsel, raising concerns about abuses of basic rights.

| 16/03/2024
| HONG KONG
by John Ai

The clash was triggered by the threat to ban the platform voted by the US House of Representatives. In response, the Chinese authorities have promised to defend its interests. American public opinion is also divided over the social network's popularity. Despite concerns, in the run-up to the vote in both the US and Europe many leaders (including Biden) have opened accounts.

| 15/03/2024
| CHINA

A delegation of 11 representatives of China’s “official” Catholic bodies took part in the assemblies that ratify Xi Jinping's political choices. Bishop Yang Yongqiang, one of the two bishops who attended the Synod at the Vatican, was also present. Bishop Shen Bin told journalists that the new goals for China’s Catholic community are “self-control, self-management, and self-construction”.

| 14/03/2024
| RED LANTERNS

Hong Kong’s legislature works overtime during the weekend to further restrict freedoms in the former British colony. Security Secretary Chris Tang justifies denying detainees the right to legal counsel for 48 hours with the risk of collusion. Meanwhile, Beijing reports the arrest and trial of about 2.4 million people.

| 11/03/2024
| HONG KONG

A seminar sponsored in Taiwan by the Dicastery for Interreligious Dialogue with Fu Jen Catholic University in a move to formulate some guidelines on a confrontation that the focus on the Chinese world makes increasingly necessary. Also starting tomorrow in Hong Kong is the third Christian-Taoist Dialogue.

| 10/03/2024
| ECCLESIA IN ASIA

Hong Kong’s Legislative Council is set to fast track the approval of a national security bill tabled today that imposes unprecedented restrictions to all forms of freedom in the former British colony, including life in prison for “treason” and up to ten years for “sedition”. The law also goes after people who do not report government opponents, a provision that will serve as an additional tool of pressure on religious communities.

| 08/03/2024
| HONG KONG - CHINA
by John Ai

Chinese influencers are asking followers to be careful after the leaked information from a hacking firm with ties to Chinese authorities was released. Teacher Li, who documented the anti-lockdown protests on Twitter, saw the number of their followers drop from 1.6 million to 1.4 million. The data leak also shows the breadth of China's cyber activities, including against foreign governments.

| 28/02/2024
| CHINA

An image of Christ on the cross painted in Stanley Prison by the Catholic businessman on trial under the National Security Act is on display at the Catholic University of Washington. Meanwhile Agnes Chow from Canada recounts her imprisonment in Hong Kong in a video.

| 27/02/2024
| HONG KONG - UNITED STATES

Record sales figures in 2023 with doubled profits in China for the largest local coffeehouse chain. But in the current difficult environment for the Chinese economy, the much lower price of its products also counts.

| 24/02/2024
| CHINA

The authorities have completed the transformation of one of the most symbolic places of Chinese Islam. The minarets have been torn down, while a sentence at the entrance invites obedience and gratitude to Beijing. A change that also affects other mosques in the area, where a large Hui Muslim community lives. As for the churches, children are forbidden to enter.

| 23/02/2024
| CHINA
by Vladimir Rozanskij

The balance of trade between the two countries has increased by 10% in the past year, exceeding USD 1 billion. Tajiks import machinery and equipment of all kinds from China and export raw materials. There are currently 580 companies with Chinese capital working in the country. But the other side of the coin is the 60% of foreign debt now in Beijing's hands.

| 20/02/2024
| CHINA - TAJIKISTAN

The outrage over the death in custody of Putin's opponent should not make the world forget that the number of political prisoners in Hong Kong is on rise with Beijing insists on "non-interference in internal affairs". On the Beijing Spring online platform, a Chinese dissident draws parallels with the fate of Liu Xiaobo and Peng Ming who died in Chinese prisons.

| 19/02/2024
| HONG KONG – CHINA

Stephen Chen Yueli was arrested as he entered mainland China on charges of "illegal business operations" for his involvement in printing children’s Sunday school materials. According to China Aid, he is in solitary confinement and cannot even see his lawyers. With him, eight other Christians were also arrested.

| 16/02/2024
| CHINA

Turquoise Roof reports that Tibetans are forced at checkpoints to install an "anti-fraud" system that actually sends personal data to the police. A database powered by US IT giant Oracle analyses millions of messages to block any assertions of local identity.

| 15/02/2024
| RED LANTERNS

The Apostolic Administrator of Harbin released a message to the faithful centred on the path to Easter. Following Pope Francis' call, he urges them to “prepare for the Great Jubilee in 2025” helping the Chinese Church to turn “Externalized ‘chanting’” into a deep prayer so that we can “fully and completely place ourselves before God”.

| 13/02/2024
| CHINA
by John Ai

Beijing intensified its military activities during the Lunar New Year. Balloons floated over the Taiwan Strait for two consecutive days. For experts, it is a warning, part of the mainland’s psychological warfare against the rebel island. For the first time, armed soldiers performed at the national Spring Festival gala.

| 12/02/2024
| CHINA – TAIWAN
by Gianni Criveller 柯毅霖

The three recent appointments of bishops indicate a willingness not to break. But the Agreement with the Vatican is never even mentioned by the People's Republic of China. While a "five-year plan" for Catholics has just come into force that cites Xi Jinping instead of the pope and invokes a "theological foundation" to a Sinicization that in fact remains only an adaptation to Party policy.

 

| 12/02/2024
| CHINA - VATICAN

The German chemical giant announced plans to speed up its exit from two joint ventures in Korla after allegations claim that its local partners worked with Chinese authorities to indoctrinate the local Muslim minority. The decision follows investigations by German media.

| 09/02/2024
| CHINA
Editor's choices
 
The Holy See has officially announced the long journey to Indonesia, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, and Singapore. Card Goh of Singapore hopes the pope will bring to his predominantly Chinese city, “renewed fervour to all Catholics [. . .], especially ...
| 12/04/2024
| VATICAN
 
by card. Anthony Poola *
The Archbishop of Hyderabad looks at the media reaction to the declaration released by the Dicastery for the Doctrine of the Faith on human dignity. The media are “focused on gender theory, sex change, surrogacy etc., but” people who “struggle ...
| 11/04/2024
| INDIA
 
The Vatican Secretary for Relations with States presides over Mass in the cathedral, the focal point of this historic trip for the local Church since the breaking of diplomatic relations between Hanoi and the Vatican in 1975. In the meeting with ...
| 11/04/2024
| VIETNAM
 
The Custody, a Jewish group and Tag Meir activists offered gifts to Muslims leaving al-Aqsa every Thursday at the Damascus Gate. Fr. Pari: An initiative that has been  carried out  for some time, but this year takes on special value in the context ...
| 06/04/2024
| HOLY LAND
 
Bishop Philip Huang Chao-ming of Hualien, near the epicentre of the 7+ quake, offers words of comfort. Some buildings are partially collapsed. Nine people are confirmed dead, while more than a hundred are still missing. For Fr Matteucig, a Taipei-based ...
| 03/04/2024
| TAIWAN
 
by sr. Regina *
Sister Regina, of the Sisters of Repair, offers her testimony. “Without humanitarian aid, children and the elderly are suffering in the forests because the roads are blocked by the military. Conscription is used to provide human shields to force ...
| 28/03/2024
| MYANMAR
 
by Dario Salvi
The conflict with Hamas and the question of hostages is one of the "sensitive issues", but not the only one. From Jerusalem - the day after Pope Francis' letter to the Christians of the Holy Land - the patriarchal vicar for Israel recalls the tensions ...
| 28/03/2024
| ISRAEL - PALESTINE
 
Plans for the structure were announced earlier this year, but a government committee has now approved its budget. The project includes a series of parallel and feeder roads to connect some of India's main military bases to the border. The government ...
| 27/03/2024
| INDIA – MYANMAR
“L’Asia: ecco il nostro comune compito per il terzo millennio!” - Giovanni Paolo II, da “Alzatevi, andiamo”