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World news in brief

08 July 2022


A helicopter flies over the avalanche area to search for people still missing after the Marmolada glacier collapsed. The glacier, in the Dolomites, is the largest in the Italian Alps

A helicopter flies over the avalanche area to search for people still missing after the Marmolada glacier collapsed. The glacier, in the Dolomites, is...

Pope prays for seven killed by melted glacier

POPE FRANCIS has called for prayers for the seven people who died and the eight who were injured by an avalanche triggered by the melting of the Marmolada glacier in northern Italy. Owing to bad weather, rescue teams with helicopters and drones were forced to abandon their search for 13 people, who were still missing this week. The incident has been linked to climate change. “The tragedies we are living because of climate change must push us to urgently find new paths that are respectful towards people and nature,” the Pope said on Twitter on Monday.


Arrests in India over 2002 Gujarat riots

A HUMAN-RIGHTS activist, Teesta Setalvad, and a former Director General of Police in Gujarat, R. B. Sreekumar, were arrested late last month on charges of forgery and criminal conspiracy, in connection with the 2002 Gujarat communal riots. Their arrest sparked protests across India, it has been reported. Mr Sreekumar has since filed for bail. The pair were arrested on 25 June, a day after India’s Supreme Court upheld the 2012 findings of an investigation that absolved the Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, of any criminal conspiracy in relation to the communal violence in Gujarat in 2002, when he was serving as the chief minister of the state. A statement from more than 2000 activists this week condemned a “naked and brazen attempt to silence and criminalize those who stand for constitutional values and who have struggled against very difficult odds to try to achieve justice for the victims of 2002”.


Bishop Peter Lee, formerly of Virginia, dies

A FORMER Bishop of Virginia (1984-2009), the Rt Revd Peter James Lee, has died aged 84. During his tenure, Bishop Lee voted to confirm the election of openly gay Bishop Gene Robinson of New Hampshire, although he later wrote that he regretted his part in the Episcopal Church’s having acted “without proper regard to the need for mutual submission to the concerns of the wider Anglican Communion” (News, 4 February 2005). But he was also critical of Provinces “deficient in their regard for homosexual persons within the Church”. Eleven churches broke away from the diocese, and a legal battle over property followed, won by the diocese in 2012.


Nigerians waiting for Christ’s return ‘rescued’

AT LEAST 77 people who were waiting in the basement of the Whole Bible Believer Church, Ondo State, in Nigeria, for the Second Coming of Christ were “rescued” by police this week, it has been reported. Twenty-three children, some as young as eight, were among those brought out. One father told local media that he had been attacked by churchgoers when he attempted to rescue his child from the basement. Two pastors have been arrested, but police are still investigating whether the people were being held by force.

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