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2014-05-22

ASIA/MALAYSIA - A Catholic nun dies after being assaulted

Kuala Lumpur (Agenzia Fides) - Sister Juliana Lim, 69, of the Congregation of the Infant Jesus, died yesterday after a violent attack suffered on May 14 in Seremban, a town near Kuala Lumpur. This is confirmed to Fides Agency by sources in the local Church. The Malaysian religious was attacked on May 14, along with Sister Mary Rose Teng, 79, by a man with covered face, while the two were in the Church of the Visitation. The man savagely beat them, and even stole a few dollars, and left them dying. Sister Juliana, was immediately taken to hospital, was in a coma for seven days and struggled between life and death. Even Sister Mary Rose was seriously injured and is still in hospital. As Fides learns, the funeral will be held tomorrow, May 23 in the same Church of the Visitation, in Seremban, presided by Archbishop Emeritus of Kuala Lumpur, His Excellency Mgr. Murphy Pakiam.
"The Malaysian Church is shocked and worried for such aggression", says to Fides Agency Fr. Augustine Julian, of the community of the Brothers of the Christian Schools in Kuala Lumpur, until recently Secretary of the local Episcopal Conference. "According to the police, this attack may be the act of a desperate man, but there is also the possibility of aggression for religious hatred. Police are investigating the case", he reports. "For now, there seems to be no direct connection with regards to the issue on the use of the term Allah between Muslims and Christians", he explains. "In society, however, there is generally a climate of mutual respect, and interreligious dialogue continues", he concludes .
The country's Prime Minister, Najib Razak, has expressed public condolences to the nun’s family and the Catholic community. According to some members of parliament, members of the opposition, the attack should not be underestimated and is the result of "growing religious extremism and anti-Christian sentiments fomented by radical Muslim groups, linked to the members of Umno", the Prime Minister’s party. (PA) (Agenzia Fides 22/05/2014)

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