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Islamists wish to topple government, Bangladesh’s leading prelate warns

Catholic World News - May 14, 2013

Islamists who recently marched on the nation’s capital wish to “topple the government” and “trigger chaos by means of violence,” the nation’s leading prelate told Aid to the Church in Need.

“There is a dispute as to what Islam is,” said Archbishop Patrick D’Rozario of Dhaka. “The protest is being carried along by Islamist groups. They have put forward 13 demands which lie completely outside the constitution,” including the death penalty for blasphemy and the segregation of women from men in the workplace.

“We call on all Bangladeshis who bear responsibility in politics and society to turn to the country's poor,” he added. “The simple people here have actually always lived together peacefully. That is a part of our culture and tradition. The conflicts tend to be brought into the country from outside.”

The Christian communities of Bangladesh have declared June 1 to be a day of joint prayer, fasting, and penitence.

The nation of 161 million, the world’s eighth most populous, is nearly 90% Muslim, nearly 10% Hindu, and 0.2% Catholic.

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