Archbishop will not release exchange of letters with activist group, Function 8
The exchange of words continues between Singapore's Archbishop Nicholas Chia and activist group Function 8.
In a statement to the media through the Archdiocese Communications Office today, the Archbishop indicated that he does not intend to release any of the letters he had sent to the group.
He said his letter to the group was intended as a private communication.
The Archbishop added if the group was going to publicise it at a political event - something which he did not intend - then they should have asked for permission first.
He said they did not do so.
As the group has already returned his letter, the Archbishop said the question of releasing it does not arise as he had never intended for it to be released in the first place.
His comments follow calls by Function 8 to publish his first letter to the group, allegedly in support of its call to abolish the Internal Security Act.
This, as well as to publish his second letter to the group, retracting his first one.
Yesterday, the Ministry of Home Affairs weighed in on the issue, criticising Function 8 for being 'disrespectful' to the Archbishop - by publicising his retraction of a letter through blogger Alex Au.
Today, Function 8 released a copy of its letter to the Archbishop, dated 1st June, in response to his letter of withdrawal.
The group said the ministry's unwarranted allegations have now forced it to show details of its letter to the Archbishop in order to clear the allegations.
Parts of the letter have been blacked out.
The group also said that it's untrue that it is disrespecful to the Archbishop because it never publicised the contents of his letter.
It said what it's seeking is for the authorities to engage civil society groups for frank exchange of views especially on sensitive subjects.
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