Turkey restores 18th-century madrasah in Bosnia

By Aldijana Hadzic

BELGRADE, Serbia (AA) – An 18th-century historical madrasah in Bosnia and Herzegovina will be restored to its original appearance by a project launched by Turkey's state-run aid agency.

The Ottoman-era Vizier Ibrahim Pasha Madrasah began operation as a center for learning in 1706 and is located in Travnik city, popularly known as the City of Viziers, due to the fact that 77 such Ottoman officials originated from the town.

In its original form, the madrasah featured two minarets which were later destroyed in 1918.

The Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA) plans to rebuild the minarets in two months.

TIKA Sarajevo Coordinator Omer Faruk Alimci told Anadolu Agency that the agency was conducting many projects in different areas in Bosnia and Herzegovina and since 1995, completing nearly 900.

Alimci said TIKA had begun installing the minarets, and that their exterior would be made of wood, as they were originally.

"There, our young generations will be excellently educated, and as a result, an excellent generation will flourish," said Alimci.

Ahmed Adilovic, who serves as Travnik's mufti, or Islamic leader, noted that the cost of the restoration project was very high and that the minarets would be built according to original documents in the Bosnia and Herzegovina State Archive.

"This project is an indication of good relations between Bosnia and Herzegovina and Turkey," said Adilovic.

Madrasah Director Dzevdet Sosic noted that the madrasah was named after former Ottoman vizier Ibrahim Pasha.

"This is the only madrasah built by a vizier in Bosnia and Herzegovina," said Adilovic.

* Written by Talha Ozturk in Belgrade

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