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'Great apprehension' over Christmas season violence

India's Christians anxious about new attacks on churches during Christmas.

We are ten days away from Christmas Day 2008 and India's Christians confess to being more than a little worried over the outbreak of new violence.

The Christmas season 2007 was the occasion for widespread attacks on Christians inside India. Last week, church leaders met with India's minister of Home Affairs:

Fr Joseph Babu, spokesman for the Bishops' Conference of India, expressed "great apprehension" in a meeting Wednesday between a Catholic Church delegation and Minister Palaniappan Chidambaram over a possible repeat this year of last year's anti-Christian violence during Christmas celebrations. In response Union Home Affairs minister reassured the delegation that the state would ensure protection for Christians and their property in Orissa.

Attacks against churches and the murder of Christians is not a problem limited to Orissa. Case in point: on Tuesday the All Indian Christian Council (AICC) released a report on anti-Christian violence in the state of Karnataka.

In light of the terrorism ...

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