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Arab ambassadors lay cornerstone of biggest Islamic center in Zurich. (with photos)

By Tamer Aboalenin (with photos)

 ZURICH, May 6 (KUNA) -- The Ambassadors of Lebanon, Saudi Arabia and Egypt in Switzerland put together the cornerstone of the Islamic center of Volketswill (north of Switzerland) in the presence of the Mufti of Zahle and the Bekaa Shaykh Khalil Al-Mays.
This center is described as the biggest of its kind in region of Zurich, which hosts the largest number of the Muslims in Switzerland because of the economic, industrial and scientific importance of this area. The Ambassador of Lebanon to Switzerland Hussein Rammal said in his speech that "this center will be the first of its kind in Switzerland to focus on Islamic science, culture, knowledge and dialogue among civilizations and communicate with the other." He also pointed out its importance at this particular time, "in response to the false picture of Islam in the media full of lies and untruths, where we must work to clarify it and introduce the correct image of Islam".
He stressed that the malicious campaign against Islam intended to divert attention from the real conflict in Palestine and in particular Judaizing of Jerusalem. For his part, the Ambassador of the Saudi ambassador to Switzerland said to the Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) "The kingdom attaches importance to the Islamic projects, wherever they are at the call of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah ibn Abdulaziz in support of the dialogue between the civilizations and to show the tolerance of Islam and the correction of the negative stereotype about it." The Egyptian ambassador to Switzerland Magdy Shaarawi told KUNA that "Al-Azhar does not hesitate to support the Muslim community in the West in its religious responsibility by providing them with qualified imams speaking different European languages, and meeting the needs of the community during the holy month of Ramadan." While the Grand Mufti of Zahle and Bekaa Khalil al-Mays expressed to (KUNA) his support for this project, "because it represents a cultural image needs to Muslims in the West to introduce the Islam. The Center should be a graciously return of the orient as a source of knowledge, culture and consciousness." The center is located on an area of 3800 square meters, 15 min. away from the city center of Zurich. The confirmed design shows the structure of the centre on four floors a mosques, special floor for women, a hall for social occasions, a school, library, a garden with children's play rooms, a hall for conferences and cultural events.
The cost of the project costs is estimated at USD seven million, USD two million of which is now available to the Islamic Foundation, which said will get the rest of the money in a good time. The head of the Islamic Waqf, which is responsible for the implementation and management of the center, Jamal Alhut told to KUNA, "We have received contributions and assistance from many people and we are confident that the project will be completed by God Almighty in a short time of the conviction of many of its importance, especially as he will be the largest Islamic center in the district of Zurich as a whole which includes the majority of Muslims in Switzerland." The coordinator of the project, Tarek Al-Mees said, "We received a number of donationd from the Muslim community for the project with contributions from many of the artisans in the work of construction, electricity, heating and securitization, paints, water delivery and works to the park, an effort that reflects the conviction community of its importance and their determination to end it as soon as possible." It was remarkable the absence of Swiss official representative in the ceremony, which was attended three Arab diplomats and by many of the Muslim community in Zurich.
Alhut said, "We resent their absence and cannot understand it. It is illogical that three Arab ambassadors attended the ceremony with a delegation from Dar Al-Mufti. (end) ta.aj KUNA 061216 May 10NNNN