"Pluralism, the recognition of people of diverse backgrounds and interests, organisations of different types and projects, different kinds and forms of creative expression, are all valuable and therefore deserving of recognition and support by government and society as a whole. Without support for pluralism, civil society does not function. Pluralism is also essential for peace, a statement that is unfortunately documented by armed conflict in contexts of cultural, ethnic, or religious differences on almost every continent at this time. It is of particular importance here in Central Asia given the demography of most countries."
Speech by His Highness the Aga Khan at the Annual Meeting of the
European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, 5 May 2003
Yo-Yo Ma and Silk Road Ensemble Perform in Central
Asia in Collaboration with the Aga Khan Music Initiative
Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble brought their unique fusion of ancient Silk Road traditions and western classical music to the heart of the Silk Road: in Bishkek, Kyrgyz Republic; Almaty, Kazakhstan; and Dushanbe, Tajikistan. The concerts were accompanied by master classes - attended by local musicians and students - at which there was a chance to share musical traditions and explore new avenues of artistic expression. The concerts and master classes are part of efforts by the Aga Khan Music Initiative and the Silk Road Project, Inc. to promote and preserve the music of the region. For more information, please see the press release and related information.
Restoration of Humayun's Tomb Gardens Completed in New Delhi, India
The gardens surrounding Humayun's Tomb in New Delhi, India, have been restored through the joint efforts of the Aga Khan Trust for Culture and the Archaeological Survey of India. The objective of the project was to revitalise the gardens, pathways, fountains and water channels of the chahar-bagh, or four-part paradise garden, according to the original plans of the builders. For more information, please see photos from the visit by His Highness the Aga Khan to New Delhi, as well as the Aga Khan's speech at the ceremony to inaugurate the restored gardens on 15 April 2003, and the accompanying press release.
Major Educational Campuses in Kenya
Two major education campuses are being developed in Kenya. The two sites are in Nairobi, where the campus is to be set amidst coffee plantations on the edge of the Nyari Estate, and at the Aga Khan Academy in Kilindini, on a south-western promontory of Mombasa Island. The 4.1 hectare Kilindini campus will integrate classrooms, libraries, state-of-the-art science and language laboratories, playing fields and a swimming pool into a fully networked, Internet-enabled academic environment. For more information, please see the press release.
Micro-credit Programme for Low-Income Areas In Syria
The Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) has launched its first micro-credit facilities in Syria. The programmes are aimed at stimulating income-generation in low-income areas and promoting small-scale agricultural and industrial enterprises. They include financing of housing improvement in areas where the rehabilitation of historic spaces is underway, with a view to enhancing the potential of the tourism and leisure industry. For more information, please see the press release. The press release is also available in Arabic (PDF format).
Rural Entrepreneurship and Education in Mozambique
Princess Zahra Aga Khan visited AKDN's Coastal Rural Support Programme (CRSP) in northern Mozambique. From a low-cost fish-processing centre conceived and managed by women on Ibo Island, to groundnut seed multiplication, sesame and sunflower oil pressing, chicken farming and livestock production in villages along the north coast, the programme has found ways to stimulate entrepreneurship in ways that simultaneously speed income growth, develop skills and improve the resource base. For more information, please see the press release and photos.
Rebroadcast of BBC Earth Report on AKDN Activities in Tajikistan
BBC World will be showing "Where Families and Mountains Meet", a film which documents AKDN's work in eastern Tajikistan, where AKDN has helped people harness renewable mountain energy, create small businesses and markets, and grow seven times the amount of food they used to grow under the old Russian collective system. The programme will be shown at the following dates and times (all times are GMT). Please consult listings for local times:
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