JANUARY 24, 1995 (Daily Nation)


At the invitation of the Government of Russia, His Highness the Aga Khan, Imam of the Ismaili Muslims, will today begin an official visit to Moscow.

During the five-day visit, based on an invitation extended last year, the Aga Khan will meet with senior Russian leaders, including his host, Foreign Minister Andrei Kozirev. He will also meet with members of the Ismaili community in Moscow.

This is the Aga Khan's first visit to Russia.

In his meetings, he will discuss the Ismaili community's international development and cultural activities and issues of common interest in respect to Russia's relations with Islamic states and Muslim communities.

Emergency relief and long-term development programmes of the Aga Khan Development Network in the Republic of Tajikistan will also be discussed.

The Aga Khan will visit the Institute for Oriental Studies, with a view to studying collaboration between that institution and the Institute of Ismaili Studies in London and the Aga Khan University.

The Aga Khan Development Network is a group of institutions, working primarily in South and Central Asia and Africa, to improve living conditions through programmes in education, health and rural development, as well as programmes of fostering private sector enterprise in industry, tourism and financial services.

The Network also sponsors important activities in architectural education and cultural revitalisation, including conservation of Samarkand's Timurid architectural heritage.

The Aga Khan Development Network - which has formal agreements with national governments in respect of its social development activities - employs more than 16,000 individuals and currently disburses annually in excess of US$100 million for non-profit activities.

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