Attack on St Paul’s Cathedral, Melbourne, foiled
THE Primate of Australia, the Archbishop of Melbourne, Dr Philip Freier, has expressed gratitude that a planned terror attack on Christmas Day on the Anglican cathedral, among other central locations, was foiled, writes Muriel Porter. Four men from Melbourne, who are believed to have accessed Islamic State propaganda in recent weeks, have so far been charged with the alleged plot. Speaking on 23 December, Dr Freier said that he was grateful that the combined work of the Victoria Police and several Commonwealth agencies had successfully disrupted the planned attack. Police were searching properties in the suburb of Meadow Heights (photograph), on 23 December. He thanked God that “the message of hope, peace, and reconciliation, which is God’s message in Christ”, was to have been proclaimed “clearly and publicly” at St Paul’s Cathedral; and that all Christmas services were to have proceeded as planned.
Christian man freed in Sudan, but three others detained
THE Revd Kuwa Shamal — one of four Christians in Khartoum, Sudan, charged with national security-related crimes last year (News, 9 September) — has been released after eight months in prison. Mr Shamal, who is head of the Sudan Church of Christ Missions Committee, was released on Monday, after the judge concluded that there was no evidence against him, and dismissed the charges, the religious-freedom charity Christian Solidarity Worldwide reports. The trial against three others — a senior minister and Vice-Moderator of the Sudan Church of Christ, the Revd Hassan Abduraheem; Adbulmonem Abdumawla; and Petr Jašek — continues next week.