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Islam seminar in Taipei could boost foreign relations - Taipei Times, Taiwan

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  • Zafar Khan
    Islam seminar in Taipei could boost foreign relations CNA , TAIPEI Wednesday, Mar 17, 2004,Page 2
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 17, 2004
      Islam seminar in Taipei could boost foreign relations
      CNA , TAIPEI
      Wednesday, Mar 17, 2004,Page 2


      The first-ever international seminar on Islam in
      Taiwan will be conducive to substantial relations
      between the country and the Islamic world, an official
      with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said yesterday.

      Lin Chin-chung (ªL¶i©¾), deputy director-general of
      the ministry's West Asian Affairs Department, made the
      remarks at a news briefing on the two-day
      international seminar that opened in Taipei on Monday
      under the auspices of the World Muslim League (WML)
      and National Chengchi University.

      Noting that the seminar not only shows the
      government's respect for religious freedom but also
      demonstrates the country's support for promoting
      exchanges with the Islamic world, Lin said that the
      Islamic world will gain a better understanding of
      Taiwan's development in various fields.

      A delegation headed by WML Secretary-General Abdullah
      Al-Turki is scheduled to stay in Taipei until March
      21. While in Taiwan they are expected to visit the
      Central Election Commission on Saturday to gain an
      understanding of its vote-counting operations.

      The WML, with its headquarters in Mecca, Saudi Arabia,
      was founded in 1962 to promote Islam, humanitarian aid
      and cooperation among Islamic countries and
      organizations. It is one of the most influential
      non-governmental organizations in the Islamic world.

      The history of Islam in Taiwan dates back to the
      mid-17th century when a group of Muslims immigrated to
      Taiwan from China together with Koxinga or Cheng
      Cheng-kung (¾G¦¨¥\, 1624-1662), the leader of an
      anti-Manchu resistance movement after the fall of the
      Ming dynasty in China who ousted the Dutch from

      Taiwan has about 50,000 Muslim citizens. In addition,
      about 50,000 Muslims from Islamic countries are
      working in the country. There are six mosques that
      sponsor many Islamic religious activities and
      festivities each year, Lin added.

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