8-Jan-12 World View — Britain Warns Of Increased Risk Of Terror Attack In Kenya

This morning’s key headlines from GenerationalDynamics.com.

  • Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas
  • Egypt’s Coptic Christians celebrate Christmas amid heavy security
  • Top Christian official murdered in Jaffa Israel marking Orthodox Christmas
  • Russia’s Patriarch Kirill walks tightrope in Orthodox Christmas message
  • Britain warns of increased risk of terror attack in Kenya
  • Kenya claims to be neutralizing al-Shabaab in Somalia
  • Nigeria imposes curfew in north after new slaughter of Christians

Orthodox Christians celebrate Christmas


Georgians attend Orthodox Christmas celebrations at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Tbilisi, early Saturday (AP)
Georgians attend Orthodox Christmas celebrations at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in Tbilisi, early Saturday (AP)

Many Orthodox Christians, including Russians, Greeks, Serbs and Montenegrins, celebrate Christmas on January 7, according to an older calendar. Political leaders join citizens in religious services, including in former communist countries, such as Russia. Tradition also calls for a 40-day fast before Christmas, during which the pious do not eat meat, dairy products or eggs. The fast ends at midnight and gives way to sumptuous feasts, but those should not start before one has attended a religious service. Some Christians in southern and eastern Europe marked the feast of Epiphany Friday, a religious holiday celebrating the revelation of God as man. Young men in Bulgaria dived in cold waters in a contest to retrieve a cross. According to belief, the person who captures it will be freed of evil spirits or other troubles. VOA

Egypt’s Coptic Christians celebrate Christmas amid heavy security

Egypt’s Coptic Christians breathed a collective sign of relief when a complex midnight Christmas service in Cairo’s Abbassiya Cathedral went off without a hitch. Last year, more than 20 people were killed in an apparent suicide bombing as hundreds of worshippers were leaving Al-Qidissin (The Saints) church in the Mediterranean city of Alexandria after a New Year’s Eve service. This year, a massive security plan was launched, and the service was attended by members of Egypt’s ruling military council, including chief of staff General Sami Anan. AFP

Top Christian official murdered in Jaffa Israel marking Orthodox Christmas

Gabriel Cadis, the chairman of the Jaffa Orthodox Church Association, was stabbed to death in Jaffa, Israel, on Friday night during a march to mark Orthodox Christmas. However, police do not suspect a religiously motivated attack. Six suspects, all members of the Christian community in Jaffa, were arrested on Saturday. Jerusalem Post

Russia’s Patriarch Kirill walks tightrope in Orthodox Christmas message


Patriarch Kirill at Friday night's Orthodox Christmas service (Ria Novosti)
Patriarch Kirill at Friday night’s Orthodox Christmas service (Ria Novosti)

Patriarch Kirill, the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, on Saturday urged the government to listen to protesters demanding free elections. At the same time, he warned the protesters against being used by those fighting for political power, comparing the opposition leaders to the Bolsheviks whose 1917 revolution brought down czarist Russia. “We destroyed the country, and why did this happen? Because in general the just protests of the people were cleverly used by political forces fighting for power.” Kirill, who has close ties with the Kremlin, is walking a fine line between appearing sympathetic to the protesters, but not wanting them to go too far. The Russian Orthodox Church was all but destroyed by the Bolshevik Revolution, and did not begin to revive until World War II, when Josef Stalin asked for the Church’s help in fighting the Nazis. AP

Britain warns of increased risk of terror attack in Kenya

Britain said Saturday it believed there was a heightened threat of “terrorist attacks” in the Kenyan capital Nairobi and that attacks “may be in the final stages of planning”. It said attacks could be “indiscriminate” and target “Kenyan institutions as well as places where expatriates and foreign travelers gather, such as hotels, shopping centers and beaches”. “We strongly advise British nationals to exercise extra vigilance and caution in public places and at public events,” the statement added. Britain’s warning comes two days after police in Nairobi issued fresh terror alerts. Provincial Police Chief (PPO) Anthony Kibuchi said, “We have received a new threat from al-Shabaab that the most notorious terror group al-Qaeda has joined and has threatened to carry out terror activities. … I once again appeal to everybody in Nairobi to continue to be extra alert and to take the security measures being undertaken positively whatever social, political or economic status one might be holding.” AFP and Capital FM (Nairobi)

Kenya claims to be neutralizing al-Shabaab in Somalia

Kenya’s fighter jets bombed al-Shabaab camps in southern Somalia on Saturday. “Levels of casualties were very high in air strikes on Friday Provisional casualties are that al-Shebaab lost 60 or more fighters, and more than 50 were injured,” according to a Kenyan army spokesman. However, the number of deaths can’t be independently verified, and is in question. However, there are now three different armies attacking al-Shabaab in Somalia — the Kenyans, the Ethiopians, and the United Nations authorized African Union forces. With fighting on multiple fronts, al-Shabaab are believed to be struggling financially, after losing a key source of income when they pulled out of fixed positions in the capital Mogadishu last August. Africasia

Nigeria imposes curfew in north after new slaughter of Christians

Adamawa State in northern Nigeria has imposed a curfew after six gunmen on Friday evening shot eleven people and unleashed terror on innocent worshipers at the Christ Apostolic Church in Yola, the state capital. This follows a series of terror attacks against Christians by the Islamist terror group Boko Haram. However, Boko Haram has not claimed responsibility for Friday’s attack, and the killings occurred only a few days before state elections, leading some politicians to claim that these attacks were the handiwork of the the ruling government, to further divide the state between Muslims and Christians. Tribune (Nigeria)


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