Posts in Asia
Why Kashmir’s small Sikh community boycotted Indian elections

The region has long been plagued by atrocities against Kashmiri Muslims, some of whom advocate for separating from India, and ethnic Kashmiri Hindus, who support India’s military occupation and takeover. Caught in the conflict is a tiny minority of Sikhs, who say their voices are not being heard.

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In India, a controversial candidate is testing religious divisions

Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur, a Hindu in Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party accused of aiding a terrorist attack against Muslims, is contesting for a seat in parliament in a region crucial to the BJP’s victory.

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‘Why I’m Not a Terrorist’: Victim of Extreme Hate in Sri Lanka

“I had all the reasons and justifications to join a terrorist group because of what has happened to me,” said Raghu Balachandran, a Christian who witnessed the murder of his father and brother in Sri Lanka’s decades-long civil war between Tamil Hindus and Sinhalese Buddhists.

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Deep dive answers about Sri Lanka's Easter attacks

In the wake of the Easter terrorist attacks in Sri Lanka, we spoke to Nishan De Mel, the executive director of Verité Research in Colombo, for a deeper analysis of who’s behind the attacks, what they may want, what they were targeting, and what this all means for South Asia and Sri Lanka’s religious groups and stability.

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Easter attacks killed Nigerian Christians too

(NEWS ANALYSIS) Reports claim that more than 40 Nigerian Christians were killed in the week leading up to Easter, and many more remain missing. Nigeria’s president Muhammadu Buhari was quick to send condolences to Sri Lanka, but slower to respond to Islamist attacks on Christians in his country.

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After Sri Lanka attacks, media should look at China

(COMMENTARY) It is 10 years since deadly riots in Xinjiang province provoked a major crackdown against Muslims; 20 years since China launched its effort to liquidate the Fulan Gong movement; and 60 years since Tibet’s young Dalai Lama fled Chinese occupiers’ harassment of Buddhists. All three campaigns persist.

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Can the US choke Iran’s radical Islamist regime?

(COMMENTARY) Iran’s nefarious intentions and activities are being closely scrutinized by the Trump administration and have led to crippling sanctions on Iran’s oil exports. And now U.S. waivers – which permitted eight specific countries to purchase Iranian oil despite existing sanctions – will not be renewed in May 2019.

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Rohingya woman may soon become first in India to attend college

The 21-year-old Rohingya refugee is inspiring girls to study more and aim higher. She wants to become a human rights activist to speak up for the rights of Rohingya people, a stateless, Muslim-majority ethnic group from Myanmar.

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Easter bombings come after wave of attacks against Sri Lankan Christians

In the past two years, Sri Lankan Christians have been attacked by various hardline Buddhist and Hindu groups. Christian organizations reported 89 cases of discrimination, violence and threats against Christians in 2018, with 40 cases already in 2019.

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Try these Easter eats from around the world

What would Jesus eat? Some of the world’s oldest Lenten bites, from Israel to India, are still sizzling. Others are cultural adaptions to fit the Lenten fast with local ingredients.

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Indonesian presidential candidates duel over who’s a better Muslim

(NEWS ANALYSIS) The country’s incumbent president Jokowi, seen as a liberal “metalhead of state”, chose conservative Muslim cleric Ma’ruf Amin as his running mate to win votes from an increasingly conservative Indonesia. Meanwhile, Jokowi’s challenger Subianto has been wooing radical Islamist groups.

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Christian and Muslim leaders ask Indians to 'vote wisely' as Modi eyes re-election

(NEWS ANALYSIS) India’s general election opens polls April 11 to May 19, with the final count expected May 23. Leaders of India’s minority faith communities are telling their flocks to elect candidates committed to pluralism and respect for everybody’s faiths amidst growing intolerance blamed on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist party.

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Muslim leader Yahya Cholil Staquf: Need to address 'problematic elements of Islamic orthodoxy' after Christchurch attack

There has been little real learning from the New Zealand mosque attack that could shape what we do in the future. However, on Mar. 24, there was a remarkable article in the U.K.’s Daily Telegraph that suggests at least one way forward.

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Hindu extremists are banning Christian churches across India

Hindu nationalist extremist groups have been using building code regulations to shut down house churches across India. Pastors and their lawyers say they’re being unfairly targeted.

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Are American Evangelicals Using Russia To Fight Their Culture War?

(ANALYSIS) The most interesting figure in the culture wars today may be Patriarch Kirill from the Russian Orthodox Church, which with Russia has been promoting traditional Christian agendas on sexuality and abortion. This weekened the international non-profit World Congress of Families, founded by a Russian and an American, is hosting its annual meet to promote a pro-Christian worldview, conservative gender roles, anti-abortion policies and a hetero-normative agenda.

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After New Zealand mosque attacks: what are religious persecution levels around the world?

(COMMENTARY) Religious persecution of Christians is more than at any other time in modern history, while other groups like Muslims, Jehovah’s Witnesses and Jews also suffer discrimination and violence in different regions of intolerance.

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Pakistani minorities are fighting religious discrimination in schools

Under Prime Minister Imran Khan, the Pakistani government aims to improve standards of education for even the most marginalized. It remains to be seen whether religious discrimination against Christian and Hindu students in the Islamic country will decrease.

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India-Pakistan Conflict: When War Reporting Takes Sides

(COMMENTARY) Fake news and biased reporting characterizes the military conflict between India and Pakistan, with some news channels parroting government claims that haven’t checked out.

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Philippines President Duterte Prophesies End of Catholicism in 25 Years

The president’s remarks over the weekend denounced clerical sexual abuse and corruption, but come after a string of insults hurled against Catholics that many believe encouraged religious violence.

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