Tunisian Prime Minister Mehdi Jomâa has called for the construction of a new campus for Zitouna University to be speeded up, to allow for the education of an elite in Islamic civilisation.
The ancient university, originally located in the Zitouna Mosque in Tunis, was closed for nearly 50 years under former presidents Habib Bourguiba and Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali to counter religious extremism.
It reopened in 2012, and its supervisory body is the Ministry of Higher Education, Scientific Research and Information Technologies.
A statement from Jomâa’s office at the end of June stressed the need to complete the project as soon as possible, to educate an elite in Islamic civilisation that would teach young people the values of moderate Islam so Zitouna University would retain its influence on a regional and global scale, reported Tunis Afrique Presse of Tunis.
The new 36-hectare campus will consist of a central administrative building, a doctoral school, an archives centre, a faculty of Islamic finances and an institute of heritage and Islamic architecture which will be unique in the Arab-Muslim world, reported Tunis Afrique Presse.
The scheme also includes an institute of civilisation and founding principles of religion, a mosque in the image of the Zitouna Mosque with capacity for 1,000 people, and a sports complex with playing fields and swimming pools.
Its architectural design is ‘Andalousian Tunisian’, said Tunis Afrique Presse.
* This article is drawn from local media. University World News cannot vouch for the accuracy of the original reports.
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