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29 September 2016

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09/29/2016 VATICAN

Pope: the logic of weapons and oppression, dark interests and violence continue to devastate Syria and Iraq


Pope: the logic of weapons and oppression, dark interests and violence continue to devastate Syria and Iraq

If we have "the impression of being wrapped in a spiral of arrogance and inertia from which there seems to be no escape" it is the experience of the evil that is in man and in history. Francis receives the members of the Catholic charitable agencies operating in Syria and Iraq gathered for their fifth meeting organized by Cor Unum.

 




09/29/2016 HONG KONG - CHINA

Card. Zen to Umbrellas Movement: The Church must denounce injustice. Undeterred


Card. Zen to Umbrellas Movement: The Church must denounce injustice. Undeterred

A Mass in front of Hong Kong parliament to commemorate the pro-democracy demonstrations two years ago. In the city and in particular in Admiralty (where hundreds of thousands of people gathered) another moment with Benny Tai. All demonstrations were conducted at 6 pm, when two years ago the police first launched tear gas. Hopes for the future.

 




09/28/2016 SAUDI ARABIA - OPEC

OPEC gives green light to production cut. Market prices for crude oil rise


OPEC gives green light to production cut. Market prices for crude oil rise

The new limit is set between 32.5 and 33 million barrels a day. A decrease of 700 thousand barrels per day. Iranian Oil Minister: "Exceptional" decision. The price of Brent increases by 6% per share touching $ 49 a barrel. Riyadh cuts public sector wages.

 




09/29/2016 SYRIA – RUSSIA – UNITED STATES

Syrian conflict: US-Russia tensions rise as Syrian troops launch offensive in Aleppo


Syrian conflict: US-Russia tensions rise as Syrian troops launch offensive in Aleppo

Kerry threatens to break relations if Russia does not stop attacks. Moscow accuses Washington of promoting a "policy of threats and blackmail". A think tank close to the Kremlin calls for Moscow to distance itself from Damascus. In Aleppo, Syrian forces seize a rebel-held area. Militias use civilians as human shields.




09/29/2016 UNITED STATES – SAUDI ARABIA

Congress overrides presidential veto on 9/11 bill, a step Obama calls a grave mistake


Congress overrides presidential veto on 9/11 bill, a step Obama calls a grave mistake

The House of Representatives voted 348-77, the Senate 97-1, overruling Obama for the first time in his eight-year presidency. Relatives of 9/11 victims can sue Saudi Arabia. White House spokesman describes the vote as “embarrassing”. For CIA director, “the bill carries "grave implications" for national security.




09/29/2016 IRAQ

Chaldean Synod bears witness to Christ with love and hope amid war and violence


Chaldean Synod bears witness to Christ with love and hope amid war and violence

In the Jubilee Year of Mercy, Chaldean bishops reiterate the importance of evangelisation. Their goals include an enhanced role for the laity, deacons and married priests. Rebel priests and monks are ordered to return to their original diocese. The prelates prayed for Aleppo and Syria.




09/29/2016 INDIA

India opts for first come, first served basis for 50 hard-to-place children


India opts for first come, first served basis for 50 hard-to-place children

Would-be adoptive couples received a message asking them to “reserve” children online. The scheme is designed to help placement of disabled or older children whom no one wants. For the president of the Family Commission of the Bishops' Conference, “This is a pure commodification of babies”.




09/29/2016 THAILAND

As Thailand’s economy sputters, anger against immigrants grows


As Thailand’s economy sputters, anger against immigrants grows

Police arrested hundreds of illegal workers this month. They face up to five years in prison, fines or deportation. "They should be doing the jobs that Thais don't want to do like work as house cleaners,” immigration police chief says. Thailand’s economy is expected to grow 3 per cent this year, a far cry from the 7 per cent of the 1990s. At least 3 million foreign workers are in the country.




09/29/2016 VATICAN

Pope: Day of Social Communications, "Fear not, for I am with you"


Pope: Day of Social Communications,

The theme for the next Day is an invitation to tell the story of the world and the stories of the men and women, based on the logic of 'good news' that reminds us that God never gives up being the Father, in any situation and with respect to every human being. Let us learn to communicate confidence and hope for history.




09/29/2016 INDIA

India, one year after lynching beef still source of controversy


India, one year after lynching beef still source of controversy

The case of the murder of Mohammad Akhlaq has shocked the public and prompted intellectuals and critics of religious nationalism to act. Writers have returned prestigious awards; students demonstrated at universities. Meanwhile, ‘cow protection vigilante groups’ refine their techniques.

 




09/29/2016 SINGAPORE

Singapore, 17 year old blogger jailed for insulting Islam and Christianity


Singapore, 17 year old blogger jailed for insulting Islam and Christianity

Amos Yee was already jailed in 2015 for criticizing the "founder" of the city-state, Lee Kuan Yew, a few hours after his death. He will serve six weeks in prison because his actions "may generate social unrest". Human Rights lawyers accuse the government of violating freedom of expression.

 




09/28/2016 ISRAEL – PALESTINE

Peres was a complex personality who believed in peace, instrumental to Israel's security


Peres was a complex personality who believed in peace, instrumental to Israel's security

Political and religious leaders in Israel and Palestine remember the late statesman. For Mgr Pizzaballa, he realised the “value of the Christian presence" at the local and international levels. Bernard Sabella stressed the lights and shadows of a clever diplomat who “was not successful." Rabbi Milgram noted that he was “obsessed with security."




09/28/2016 INDIA – ITALY

Indian Supreme Court says Massimiliano Latorre can stay in Italy until the end of arbitration


Indian Supreme Court says Massimiliano Latorre can stay in Italy until the end of arbitration

The recent decision grants the Italian marine, already in Italy for health reasons, the same conditions as Salvatore Girone who returned to Italy after four years.




09/28/2016 VIETNAM

Formosa Plastics Group pollutes river after polluting sea


Formosa Plastics Group pollutes river after polluting sea

Government authorises plant to dump effluent into Quyên River, which provides a livelihood to tens of thousands of people. For days, residents have demonstrated in a peaceful manner to stop the decision. Redemptorist Fr Đặng Hữu Nam has taken thousands of families, Catholic and non-Catholics, to sign a petition against the plant.




09/28/2016 BANGLADESH

Bangladeshi writer Haq, a critic of fundamentalism, dies


Bangladeshi writer Haq, a critic of fundamentalism, dies

Syed Shamsul Haq, who died aged 81, was one of the country’s most prolific and brilliant writers. He had been suffering from lung cancer for some time. He was the youngest recipient of the Bangla Academy Award, Bangladesh’s highest literary award. Christians remember him as "a teacher and guide."




09/28/2016 PHILIPPINES

Church and government together to rehabilitate drug addicts in the Philippines


Church and government together to rehabilitate drug addicts in the Philippines

The Archdiocese of Cagayan de Oro and local authorities plan to work together on a programme to help prevent and treat drug abuse. Although the Church does “not have the facilities for scientific rehabilitation,” said Archbishop Ledesma, it can provide “spiritual healing”, adding “we cannot solve a crime by committing another crime”.




09/28/2016 VATICAN

Pope: "The Church is for everyone, especially for the bad"


Pope:

"God’s salvation can reach any man in any condition, even the most negative and painful. God's salvation is for everyone: for all! Without exception. And it is offered to all. This is why the Jubilee is a time of grace and mercy for all, good and bad. " "Jesus saved us staying on the Cross. And we all know it is not easy to stay on the cross on our little crosses of every day. "

 




09/28/2016 VATICAN - SYRIA

Pope: Aleppo, "the perpetrators of the bombings, will be accountable before God."


Pope: Aleppo,

Francis appeals "to everyone to commit themselves with all their strength to the protection of civilians as an imperative and urgent obligation". Tomorrow "Cor Unum" to meet on Syrian and Iraqi crisis.

 




09/28/2016 CHINA

Discipline and management to dominate the next Communist Party plenum


Discipline and management to dominate the next Communist Party plenum

The most important political meeting of the CCP will be held October 24 to 27. Premier Li Keqiang did not take part  in decision because "traveling": according to some analysts, gap with President Xi Jinping widening. Reshuffle ready ahead of the XIX Party Congress. The central leader wants to further consolidate his personal power.

 




09/28/2016 INDIA - PAKISTAN

Modi boycotts SAARC summit in Islamabad, the Indian Church: "Peace Now"


Modi boycotts SAARC summit in Islamabad, the Indian Church:

After the announcement of the Indian prime minister, also Bangladesh, Bhutan and Afghanistan have decided not to participate. The 19th conference on regional cooperation was to be held in November, but postponement likely. Tension between Delhi and Islamabad, after weeks of mutual weeks accusations.


 




09/28/2016 ISRAEL

Shimon Peres has died, a man of peace and of war


Shimon Peres has died, a man of peace and of war

He was 93 years of age. In his youth he was a "hawk". He was responsible for the supplies of arms to Israel from the USSR, France, the United States. He was the first proponent of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories. Twice prime minister, president for seven years. With Rabin and Arafat, he won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1994. He has participated as a "dove" at the meeting of prayer for peace in the Vatican in 2014. Gideon Levy: Peres was a man of "almost".

 




09/28/2016 LEBANON

The Maronite patriarchy "in favor of Aoun for Lebanese presidency "


The Maronite patriarchy

The vicar general approves the choice of the Free Patriotic Movement leader to end stalemate over election of head of state. According to Msgr. Sayyah he "enjoys the support of the majority of Christians." The election of the president will favor to an agreement on a new electoral law. But possibility Franjieh remains open.

 




09/28/2016 GEORGIA - CHINA

Free trade between Georgia and China will change Central Asian axis


Free trade between Georgia and China will change Central Asian axis

The two governments signed an agreement in record time that virtually eliminates duties and import and export tariffs and are preparing, again in record time, to enact it. Big benefits for the small Georgian export market, especially for the wine makers, and little risk of "invasion" by Chinese goods. Beijing’s aim is to garner Georgian support and block Russian access to routes of New Silk Road. Courtesy of the Jamestown Foundation.

 




09/27/2016 CHINA - ITALY

Fr Gheddo: I saw the Church’s resurrection in China


Fr Gheddo: I saw the Church’s resurrection in China

He visited China during the Cultural Revolution and after Deng Xiaoping modernisations. Catholic communities that seemed destroyed blossomed again. Ties with old PIME missionaries expelled by Mao Zedong were renewed. The mission has now new frontiers. Here is Fr Piero Gheddo’s autobiography.




09/27/2016 HOLY LAND

For Mgr Marcuzzo, pilgrimages are an instrument of the New Evangelization


For Mgr Marcuzzo, pilgrimages are an instrument of the New Evangelization

For the Patriarchal Vicar of Jerusalem, travelling in the footsteps of Christ is a source for the "rebirth of faith". It is an essential element for Europe and North America, where a crisis of religion is unfolding. The number of Chinese and Vietnamese pilgrims who understand “the wonder of faith" is growing. Israel restricts entry to Arab Christians, especially from Jordan. AsiaNews proposes a pilgrimage.




09/27/2016 CHINA - VATICAN

Priests and faithful in China critical of new regulations on religious activities


Priests and faithful in China critical of new regulations on religious activities

On October 7, the Regulations will be implemented. Criticism of contradiction between the emphasis on Constitution, which claims religious freedom in China and the Regulations which place numerous limitations on its expression. The State Council’s intervention on religions is "illegal”.  Requests for a law that would recognize the right also to the domestic churches (underground) and all religions, not only the 5 recognized by the Beijing government.




09/27/2016 SINGAPORE

Singapore parishes to be a "place of evangelisation and hospitality for everyone"


Singapore parishes to be a

More than 400 representatives from the country’s 32 parishes met for a day to talk and bear witness. They discussed building the community of the faithful, promote evangelisation among young people, and encourage the involvement of the faithful in parish life. For the episcopal vicar for the New Evangelisation, a “Church that has so much hospitality in it will be a welcoming church”.




09/27/2016 CHINA

Guangzhou: three trade unionists sentenced for causing social problems


Guangzhou: three trade unionists sentenced for causing social problems

The sentence includes jail time and probation. The accused were members of an NGO working on behalf of workers’ rights. They were charged with causing damage with strikes and negotiations with companies. All three pleaded guilty and decided not to appeal. The leader, Zeng Feiyang, was accused of receiving foreign funds to harm the Chinese government.




09/27/2016 SRI LANKA

More than 800 Sri Lankan kids put on an “exhibit" of the Year of Mercy (PHOTOS)


More than 800 Sri Lankan kids put on an “exhibit

Students attending catechism in two parishes near Colombo organised the event, showing Jesus’s works and miracles, the holy doors open across the country, and a full-scale reproduction of a Holy Door. With this exhibition, " children were able to express their talents."




09/27/2016 PAKISTAN

Peshawar: three years after the Protestant church massacre, some still struggle to survive


Peshawar: three years after the Protestant church massacre, some still struggle to survive

On 22 September, prayers were held at All Saints Church for the Taliban’s victims. Some of the injured still require hospital treatment. On Saturday, a Mass was held in St John Vianney Church. Arif Aqeel was left paralysed and mute by the blasts.




09/27/2016 VATICAN

Pope: "Strong prayers” to overcome “spiritual desolation"


Pope:


"We need to figure out when our spirit is in this state of all-encompassing sadness, when it has almost no breathing space: This happens to us all". We must pray, pray strenuously, just like Job, cry out day and night for God to incline His ear. "It is a prayer of knocking on the door, but forcefully."

 




09/27/2016 SAUDI ARABIA

Thousands of Saudi women signed a petition calling for an end to male protection


Thousands of Saudi women signed a petition calling for an end to male protection

At least 14,000 women have joined the campaign, using their name. Many more have signed the initiative anonymously. The promoters are "very proud" of this support. Now they demand a response from authorities. But the campaign has met with resistance among some Saudi women who are in favor of protection.

 




09/27/2016 SRI LANKA

Body of the journalist killed for criticizing government to be exhumed


Body of the journalist killed for criticizing government to be exhumed

Lasantha Wickrematunge was killed in 2009 in broad daylight on his way to work. He had been a stalwart critic of the corruption of the government led by President Rajapaksa, human rights violations and the war against the Tamil Tigers. His tomb is guarded, to prevent retaliation of his killers who are still at large.


 




09/27/2016 IRAN

Tehran, Khamenei clips Ahmadinejad’s presidential ambitions: no to third term


Tehran, Khamenei clips Ahmadinejad’s presidential ambitions: no to third term

The Grand Ayatollah advises against the ultra-conservative leader’s running for president in 2017. His presence threatens to polarize the country, an "evil" for "everyone." Ahmadinejad in recent months had returned to the public arena. According to his supporters he will obey, despite himself, the dictates of the supreme leader.  They had already clashed in the past.

 






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