The Archbishop of Karachi, the first Pakistani cardinal in 24 years, expresses his best wishes for the end of Ramadan. He speaks about relations with Muslims and their positive reactions after his election as cardinal as well as about his hope for a visit by Pope Francis to Pakistan.
The complaint started with the father of a young tribal ethnic Sarna who wanted to marry a Christian. The girl, the future husband and two Christians allegedly tried convert even the elderly father. The anti-conversion law provides for severe penalties for those who force the conversion of minors and tribals.
Following Pope Francis, Fr Cedric Prakash hopes the Church in India will be "bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets”. Hindu nationalists criticise the bishops' views about the country's politics. The hullabaloo by fundamentalists has only one explanation, they “are either too afraid or too ashamed of the reality."
The patriarch supports Russia, but advises the Orthodox clergy to offer maximum hospitality and welcome to visitors to the country. Putin thanks the head of FIFA and recalls the Russians’ slogan: "Sport is outside politics". The 11 cities where the matches will take place are like a trip to "classic" and "profound" Russia. Russian women are advised to avoid "promiscuous" relationships with foreign athletes.
Pakistan goes to the polls on 25 July. The Muttahida Majlis-e-Amal, an alliance of five ultraconservative regional parties, is using religion “to attract votes”. The Constitution already promotes Islamic law. Some want to see a focus on women's rights and unbiased education.
The law was approved by an 86 per cent margin. For critics it will restrict political and religious freedom. Foreign companies will be forced to provide private user data to the government. In the past, Catholic sites, including AsiaNews, have been blocked. For Catholic priest, Vietnam’s Communist regime deems Catholic social doctrine unacceptable.
The presidential decree issued secretly gives Lebanese citizenship to 375 foreigners, including Syrians and Iraqis, Christians and Muslims. Some of them are under suspicion for iffy connections. For Card Al-Rahi, they do not honour "Lebanese nationality". The life of the country itself is in danger. Maronite bishops meet to discuss Church, social and pastoral issues.
With today's signature, the two leaders commit to a lasting and stable peace on the Korean Peninsula. The deal calls for the recovering the remains of prisoners of war. Kim makes an "Unwavering commitment" to denuclearise the peninsula. Trump offers security guarantees to North Korea. China approves; France has doubts. South Koreans “hope” for peace. North Korean refugees are concerned.
The civil war in the northern state has entered its seventh year. The number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) has exceeded 150,000. Some tell of their flight from their homes and of their life in the reception facilities.
Writer Liao Yiwu spoke with Liu Xia, wife of the late dissident Liu Xiaobo, who was left to die in prison from cancer. Under house arrest, Liu Xia was promised by the government that she could leave China for treatment. But nothing has happened so far. Despite her request, Angela Merkel could not meet her. Liao pleads with politicians and ordinary people.