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World news in brief

03 September 2021


A boy in a Rohingya refugee camp on the outskirts of Chennai, eastern India, in June

A boy in a Rohingya refugee camp on the outskirts of Chennai, eastern India, in June

‘Rohingya will be vaccinated’ say military

ROHINGYA Muslims in Myanmar will receive vaccinations against Covid-19, a spokesman for the country’s ruling military, Zaw Min Tun, said last Friday. “They are also our people as well. We will not leave anyone behind,” he was reported as saying at a news conference. Mr Min Tun, who used the government term “Bengalis” to describe the Rohingyas, said that those living in the western state of Rakhine, including the townships of Maungdaw and Buthidaung, would be vaccinated. UN-appointed investigators have called for military leaders in Myanmar to be investigated for genocide in Rakhine state and crimes against humanity in other regions (News, 31 August 2018).

Coptic choir viewed hymn-singing on Cairo Metro

A VIDEO of the Aghapy Coptic Choir singing hymns on the Cairo Metro went viral on social media last week, The Jerusalem Post reports. The minister for emigration and Egyptian expatriates’ affairs, Nabila Makram, who is a member of the Coptic Church, shared the video on her personal Facebook page to commemorate the Feast of the Queenship or Ascension of the Virgin Mary, on 22 August. A human-rights lawyer in Egypt, Makarios Lahzy, was quoted as saying: “The incident is unusual, exceptional, and has a measure of courage. It is brave in the face of reality. The reality is that Egyptian society is intolerant of Christians’ public expression of faith. Sometimes they are not allowed to sing in their churches and it is possible to demolish those churches.”

Eradication of leaded petrol will prevent deaths, says UN

LEADED petrol is no longer used anywhere in the world, after service stations in Algeria stopped offering it to drivers, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) has said. The UN secretary-general, António Guterres, said on Monday: “Ending the use of leaded petrol will prevent more than one million premature deaths each year from heart disease, strokes and cancer. And it will protect children whose IQs are damaged by exposure to lead.” A UN news report said: “Most high-income nations had prohibited leaded petrol use by the 1980s, but almost all low and middle-income countries were still using it as late as 2002.” That year, the UNEP established the Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles, a public-private alliance that campaigned to eliminate leaded petrol from the world.

Attack on Cameroon churches condemned

AN ATTACK last month on a Presbyterian church in the town of Bali, in Cameroon, in which one worshipper was killed, was “one of the latest atrocities in a long and painful history of extremist violence”, members of the Ecumenical Forum for Peace and Justice in Cameroon said in a statement issued on Tuesday by the World Council of Churches. “We call on the government of Cameroon to conduct an impartial and transparent investigation into the attack on the Presbyterian Church Ntanfoang-Bali, and to ensure that those responsible are held accountable,” the statement said.

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