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Mali bishops warn of Sharia imposition

Catholic World News - April 19, 2012

Amid political turmoil in the west African nation of Mali, the nation’s bishops have expressed concern about the potential for the imposition of Sharia throughout the nation. Sharia was recently imposed in Timbuktu, the largest city in northern Mali.

“The situation is of great concern to the bishops, both for the humanitarian emergency and because Christians who live in the north were heavily affected by the violence, which resulted in the destruction of property of the Catholic community,” said Father Edmond Dembele, secretary of the nation’s episcopal conference. “The church of Gao was not completely destroyed but was severely ransacked.”

“What is also reason of concern is the strengthening of the Islamists, with their attempts to impose the Sharia law throughout the country,” he added. “The bishops, however, express appreciation for the initiation of the solution of the crisis, with the appointment of the ad interim president and prime minister of the transition.”

The nation of 15.3 million is 2% Catholic, according to Vatican statistics.

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