by Greg Spearritt
Religion News Australia
February 22 – March 1, 2015
Religion news stories from Australia
(Research: Greg Spearritt)
Knox Grammar had a culture of covering up
sexual abuse, royal commission told (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 23 - Widespread child sexual abuse at the prestigious private boys school Knox Grammar was covered up for decades because the school was more concerned about its reputation than the welfare of students, a royal commission has been told.
Another victim claims sexual abuse at St
Patrick's College in Sale (The
Feb 24 - The investigation into sexual abuse at St Patrick's College in Sale has broadened with at least one other victim contacting police.
King's School headmaster Tim Hawkes defends
his handling of alleged sexual assault at Knox (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 26 - The headmaster of the prestigious King's School, Tim Hawkes, said he was not sorry about the way he handled the alleged sexual assault of a year 8 boy under his supervision at Knox Grammar School in the 1980s.
Former Knox teacher Chris Fotis believed to
have fled Nelson Bay five days ago (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 26 - A former Knox Grammar teacher who failed to appear at a royal commission into child abuse this week has not been seen near his Nelson Bay home for days.
Victims of sex abuse at elite school say
cries for help ignored (Brisbane
Feb 27 - Knox Grammar School was more worried about its reputation than its pupils' plights when sexual abuse was alleged, a royal commission has been told.
Don't jail Catholic pedophile: lawyer (The West Australian)
Feb 27 - A Catholic brother pedophile who subjected a boy to two years of sexual abuse shouldn't go to jail, his lawyer has argued.
After nine trials spanning 12 years St
Joseph's teacher Brother John Maguire faces sentencing (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 28 - After nine separate trials spanning 12 years, Brother John Dennis Maguire was used to being in a courtroom.
Victorian students flock to Islamic schools
as Muslim population grows (Brisbane
Mar 1 - Victorian students are flocking to Islamic schools in record numbers, with enrolments
Pope Francis approves burial of homeless
man at prestigious Vatican Teutonic Cemetery (ABC
Feb 28 - A homeless man has been buried in the exclusive Teutonic Cemetery within the Vatican in the latest sign of how Pope Francis's concern for society's most vulnerable is changing the way the Church does things.
Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican's
financial watchdog, slammed for lavish spending (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 28 - Cardinal George Pell, who was hand-picked by Pope Francis to cut outlays and shed light on the Vatican's murky finances, has been accused of spending half a million euros in six months by flying business class and using large sums on salaries and office furniture.
Britain's first PEGIDA anti-Islamisation
demonstration dwarfed by 2,000 counter-protesters (ABC
Mar 1 - An estimated 375 people who turned out for a German-based group's first "anti-Islamisation" demonstration in Britain were outnumbered by a 2,000-strong crowd of counter-protesters, police say.
Islamic State is teaching terror to the
junior jihadis (The Courier-Mail,
Feb 23 - ISLAMIC State terrorists have opened a “junior jihadi” training camp teaching young recruits how to fight, and new schools for English-speaking kids which may service the five children of notorious Sydney terrorist Khaled Sharrouf.
France seizes passports of six suspected
jihadists headed for Syria (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 24 - Paris: Six French citizens have had their passports confiscated and 40 more will be banned from leaving the country after allegedly planning to travel to Syria and Iraq, Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve has said.
Islamic State militants abduct at least 150
Christians from Syrian villages, activists say (ABC
Feb 26 - Jihadists from the Islamic State (IS) group have kidnapped at least 150 Assyrian Christians in north-east Syria, activists say.
Nigerian president visits Islamic
militants' massacre site, as 35 people killed in three bombings (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 27 - Nigerian president Goodluck Jonathan has visited the scene of what is feared to be Islamic group Boko Haram's worst massacre, and vowed the insurgency would soon be over.
Islamic State jihadists appear in video
destroying ancient artefacts in Iraq's Mosul museum (ABC
Feb 27 - Islamic State militants armed with sledgehammers and jackhammers have destroyed priceless ancient artefacts in the Iraqi city of Mosul.
Iraq statue-smashing sparks outrage,
heritage fears (The West
Feb 27 - Baghdad (AFP) - A video of jihadists in Iraq gleefully smashing ancient statues to pieces with sledgehammers sparked global outrage and fears Friday that more of the world's oldest heritage will be destroyed.
U.N. condemns Islamic State's 'barbaric
terrorist acts' in Iraq
Feb 28 - UNITED NATIONS (Reuters) - The United Nations Security Council on Friday condemned what it described as the latest "barbaric terrorist acts" in Iraq by Islamic State militants, including the destruction of priceless religious and cultural artifacts.
Fears grow as jihadists abduct 220 Assyrian
Christians in north-eastern Syria (ABC
Feb 27 - Islamic State jihadists have abducted 220 Assyrian Christians in north-eastern Syria in recent days, a monitoring group says, as international concern grows for the minority group.
Islamic State under pressure as Kurds seize
Syrian town (The West Australian)
Feb 27 - BEIRUT (Reuters) - Kurdish forces dealt a blow to Islamic State by capturing an important town on Friday in the latest stage of a powerful offensive in northeast Syria, a Kurdish militia spokesman said.
Jihadi John: Islamic State killer named by
Feb 27 - The Islamic State killer who has appeared on video beheading hostages has been named by media as former London computer programmer Mohammed Emwazi.
Mohammed Emwazi was an 'extremely kind,
extremely gentle' young man radicalised by MI5 (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 27 - London: Mohammed Emwazi, now identified as the Islamic State's notorious executioner 'Jihadi John', followed a familiar trajectory from a 'beautiful young man' to an alienated and radicalised victim of persecution by MI5, a British advocacy group claims.
Teacher denies influencing Canadian teens
headed to Syria (Brisbane Times)
Feb 28 - Montreal: A Muslim teacher once jailed by Canada as a security threat denied on Friday he had radicalised Canadian teens believed to have headed to Syria to fight with Islamic State, saying his school had had only brief contact with one of the six students.
Atheist US Avijit Roy blogger killed in
machete attack in Bangladesh (Brisbane
Feb 28 - Dhaka: Machete-wielding assailants hacked to death a blogger in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka, in the latest of a series of attacks on writers who support freethinking values in the Muslim-majority nation.
Isis’s promise of certainty is what lures
the likes of Mohammed Emwazi (The
Feb 28 – (Opinion: Jonathan Freedland) Maybe it was the goalpost that did it.
Islamic State executioner Jihadi John feared
he was a ‘dead man walking’ (The
Mar 1 - A BRITISH man identified in reports as the Islamic State executioner known as “Jihadi John” feared he was a “dead man walking” after run-ins with security services before fleeing to Syria to begin his reign of terror, email exchanges with a journalist claim.
Mass castrations: officers crack code of
silence of followers of Indian guru Ram Rahim (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 26 - Delhi: Many Indians will tell you that a sage guru can add a measure of potency to an otherwise mundane existence.
Narendra Modi's plans to modernise India threatened
by religious disputes (Brisbane
Feb 27 - Tensions over religious site in Ayodhya contested by Hindus and Muslims threaten to stymie Delhi's economic program.
Mustafa Abdel Ghany pleads not guilty to
marrying child bride (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 26 - A teenager accused of taking a child bride has denied he married the 15-year-old girl in a backyard ceremony despite police tapping his phone and hearing him refer to the girl as his wife.
Australia should send troops to fight IS –
Ahmad El Hariri, Rene Moawad (Brisbane
Feb 28 - Prime Minister Tony Abbott has been encouraged to put boots on the ground in the war against Islamic State as well as providing political support to sovereign states in the region by two influential Lebanese political leaders visiting Australia.
Government is cracking down on foreign
fighters and hate preachers (The
Feb 24 - AUSTRALIAN jihadis trying to get home could face mandatory deradicalisation, if they’re not permanently shut out of the country, anyway.
Islamic Council of Victoria criticises
Prime Minister Tony Abbott over 'fearmongering' comments (ABC
Feb 24 - Victoria's peak Islamic body has criticised Prime Minister Tony Abbott for "fearmongering" over his comments during his National Security Statement on Monday.
Muslim Women's Association sceptical of
Julie Bishop's claim (ABC
Feb 26 - The Muslim Women's Association says it doubts the claims made by Foreign Minister Julie Bishop that up to 40 Australian women, including "jihadi brides", are supporting the Islamic State terrorist group.
Terror threat to Senator Jacquie Lambie: ‘I
will take the honour in beheading you’ (The Courier-Mail, Brisbane)
Mar 1 - “I WILL take the honour in beheading you” — that’s the horrific threat sent to Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie by terrorists claiming it would be her fate unless she helped introduce Sharia law to Australia.
Lambie threatened with beheading (The West Australian)
Mar 1 - A poison pen letter claiming that terrorists plan to behead outspoken Tasmanian senator Jacqui Lambie has been referred to police, it's been reported.
Shaolin pays mortgage, will fight for
bigger development (ABC News)
Feb 23 - The Abbot in charge of a Shaolin Temple project proposed for the South Coast has paid the final cheque for land at Comberton Grange.
Australian killed fighting Islamic State
named as Ashley Kent Johnston (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 27 - An Australian killed fighting for the Kurds against Islamic State in northern Syria - and thought to be the first Westerner to die in battle against IS – has been identified as 28 year-old Ashley Kent Johnston.
Domestic violence deserves the same
attention as terrorism (Sydney Morning Herald)
Feb 27 – (Opinion: Jacqueline Maley) We need to include Muslims and men in our search for answers to the twin scourges of terrorism and domestic violence.
Australian Sikhs say abuse on the rise as
they cop Anti-Muslim sentiment (Brisbane
Feb 27 - Not long after the terror alert level was raised to high, truck driver Amar Singh was working when a stranger approached and said: "You look like a terrorist. You should be on a terrorist watch list."
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