A Chinese doctor has been sentenced to a suspended death penalty after a court found her guilty of abducting and selling seven newborn babies over a two-year period. The doctor's case has shed negative light on China's child trafficking problem.
Zhang Shuxia, an obstetrician at a hospital in the Shaanxi province, was found guilty of selling seven babies to a human trafficking ring from November 2011 to July 2013. Zhang reportedly convinced parents of the newborn babies that their child was infected with a disease or disabled. Once she persuaded the parents to give up their children, the infants were sold to a trafficking ring, which in turn sold the babies to other families.
Zhang received on average 20,000 yuan each for a female baby, while one male baby she sold in 2011 sold for 47,000 yuan. more >>
Evangelist Benny Hinn has cancelled his trip to Bangalore, India where he was to participate in a prayer conference this week. The cancellation, reportedly due to a "visa problem," comes amid protests among Hindu groups who were concerned about Hinn converting their countrymen to Christianity.
Kamal Panth, the Additional Commissioner of Police (Law and Order), revealed to the press on Tuesday that organizers of the Christian Prayer Conference had informed the authorities that Hinn's visit had been cancelled.
"Earlier organizers had said he will be coming; recently they have sent us a letter with names of pastors attending, which does not mention his name — so they have said he is not coming," Panth was quoted as saying. more >>
Former NBA player Dennis Rodman apologized Monday for "the certain situations" currently going on in North Korea, saying he can't control what goes on in the country and that he's "not God." Rodman recently received criticism for comments he made regarding detained American missionary Kenneth Bae, who has been imprisoned in the Asian country for over a year.
After spending a week in the communist country to celebrate leader Kim Jong Un's birthday by hosting a basketball game, Rodman told media at Beijing's International Airport on Monday that he is "sorry for what's going on in North Korea, the certain situations."
"I'm sorry, I'm sorry I couldn't do anything," Rodman said. "It's not my fault. I'm sorry. I just want to do some good stuff, that's all I want to do." Rodman has defended his recent trips to North Korea as being a method of "basketball diplomacy," where former NBA players accompany Rodman to the Asian country to play basketball with the hopes of bridging differences between North Korean and western culture. more >>
An Indian court has said that controversial evangelist Benny Hinn will be allowed to visit the state of Karnataka despite protests and petitions from fundamentalist Hindi groups against him.
"India is a secular country. It has so many sects, languages, beliefs and religions as well as social and cultural groups. Tolerance is the need of the hour. We are shocked that the courts are used for these kinds of issues," said Karnataka's High Court, according to Asia News.
Hinn, who is scheduled to speak at a Christian Prayer Conference in Bangalore later this month, attracted protests from close to 2,000 Hindus who on Jan. 3 gathered in the city and called for officials to ban him from visiting. more >>
A Chinese woman has been diagnosed with schizophrenia and has described herself as a "walking corpse" two years following a forced abortion, highlighting the dangers of the country's one-child policy rule, according to a pro-life group.
"It was the pain of my lifetime, worse than the pain of delivering a child. You cannot describe it," 25-year-old Gong Qifeng said in a recent interview, according to The Associated Press. "And it has become a mental pain. I feel like a walking corpse."
According to the report, two years ago when Gong was seven months pregnant with her second child in China's southern province of Hunan, and was in violation of the country's family size policy, she was taken by government officials who held her down and injected a syringe of labor-inducing drugs into her stomach. more >>
A Roman Catholic priest and director of a diocesan newspaper in Malaysia is facing prosecution for using the word "Allah" to refer to God in his publication, something that is prohibited by law in the Muslim majority nation.
"The situation is quite serious. There is great concern in the Catholic Church because the story has taken a turn for the worse," Friar Augustine Julian, a missionary of the Brothers of Christian Schools in Kuala Lumpur and former secretary of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of Malaysia shared with Agenzia Fides, the news agency of the Vatican.
"The investigation of the judiciary in course is a subtle form of pressure towards all Christians. There is strong concern in the community and tension with radical Islamic groups" more >>