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Hard edge of China’s soft power

MELBOURNE (SE): As China was denigrating the Permanent Court of Arbitration in anticipation of an unfavourable judgement in the South China Sea case filed by The Philippines, on August 21 an unidentified woman of Chinese ethnicity looked defiantly at a television camera at a rally in the streets of Canberra, Australia, and blurted, “The South China Sea belongs to China and that is all there is to it!”

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China gets ticks for human development

BEIJING (SE): “China has made great progress in human development, yet must continue deepening its reforms and encouraging social innovation to ensure that human development is inclusive and equal and benefits all members in society,” a press release from the United Nations (UN) Development Programme says on publishing its 2016 report on Human Development in China on August 22.

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Clandestine ordination in unofficial Church

ROME (SE): Father Dong Guanhua was reported by the Rome-based Vatican Insider to have been ordained as a bishop in the unofficial Church diocese of Zhengding, China, in late September.

The report says that he did not consult the local, legitimate bishop, or have permission from the pope or Holy See.

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China contributes to Vatican consultation on environment

VATICAN (SE): “The long term task of building a harmonious society and the understanding that to be truly and enduringly harmonious, the harmony must not only extend beyond the borders of China and include all peoples of the world, but above all, it must include harmony between humans and nature,” Hu Deping, the head of a delegation from China to a consultation prior to the Conference of Parties 22 on the environment held at the Casina Pio IV at the Vatican, said.

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A precious gift

A few weeks ago Hong Kong hosted the 26th International Congress of The Transplantation Society from August 18 to 22, the first by a Chinese city, indicative that the significant increase in organ donations in China has come under the spotlight.








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Constitution versus religious regulations

HONG KONG (AsiaNews): China is poised to promulgate a new set of Regulations on Religious Activities on October 7, which seek to control every facet of the lives of religious communities from personnel to places of worship, and from statues to buildings.

The regulations also make specific reference to terrorist activities and separatist movements, with the big demand being that there are to be no ties with foreign countries, as all religions in China must be fully independent.

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Permanent deaconate has long way to go in China

HONG KONG (AsiaNews): For what is believed to have been the first time the Church in China has begun a discussion on the possibility of establishing the permanent deaconate.

While the permanent deaconate has grown in Hong Kong and is open to both married and single men, a September 6 to 9 gathering of the Council of Chinese Bishops was the first occasion on which it has been formally discussed in China.

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Consipiracies and old churches

HONG KONG (UCAN): Construction work surrounding the church in the parish of St. Francis Xavier in central Shanghai has caused damage to the 164-year-old structure causing cracking in the walls, repairs to which have rendered the building only partly usable at various times and disrupting normal activities.

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Emerging patterns from Duterte’s erratic rhetoric

HONG KONG (SE): Despite the highly confusing and seemingly contradictory statements on foreign policy articulated by the president of The Philippines, Rodrigo Duterte, some patterns are beginning to emerge.

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What’s in the Vatican negotiations for China?

HONG KONG (SE): The ongoing negotiations between the Vatican and Beijing over finding mutually acceptable ways in the contentious area of appointing bishops in China and harmonising relations between the official and unofficial Church communities have attracted great interest in the Church both in and outside China, with at least one forum held in Hong Kong on September 25 calling for more transparency from the two tight-lipped bodies.

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