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Subject Prince Aga Khan going to transfer official residence to Portugal!!!
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Original Message It was a close fight but in the end, the Portuguese diplomacy won. Canada tried to convince the Prince Aga Khan to choose Ontario as world headquarters of the Ismaili community but is Lisbon "capital" of the 15 million of this Shiite minority without a territory they can call their live all over the world. To this day, there was a central office in Chantilly (Paris), which will be transferred to the country. The official residence of the Prince also will be in Portugal, where seven thousand Ismaili Khoja live, ie ethnic Indian mother with roots in Mozambique. It is a community with high social status and economic power, with important links to the business world - such as Sana family, owners of the hotels with the same name, and Sacoor brothers, clothing multinational's founders.
The agreement signed last week between the Portuguese State and the Ismaili Imamat will bring to Portugal investments of hundreds of millions of euros. The construction of new facilities and headquarters of the official residence of the prince, and the displacement of hundreds of employees working in the Network agencies for the Aga Khan Development (in education, culture and combating poverty) are the most immediate works . The largest investments will come later in scientific and medical research, as well as development cooperation - with countries like Mozambique also reap the benefits.
The intense negotiations involving dozens of people in various world capitals, under the leadership of Minister of Foreign Affairs, Rui Machete, and Nazim Ahmad, Representative of the Aga Khan network in Portugal. For the choice of our country contributed the fact that it was not the first Muslim state to sign agreements with the Ismaili Imamat, first in 2005 and then in 2009, based on the Law of Religious Freedom, recognizing him a similar status to the Vatican as well as the fact that they feel well integrated here.
At a time when Islamic extremists gain ground in the world, the approach to a Muslim community that cultivates tolerance and peace was seen by the Portuguese government as a strategic investment. Rui Machete considers this "an historic occasion for Portugal" and highlights the "model of civic participation and social awareness to all outstanding securities" of the Ismailis. The researcher of Islamic affairs Faranaz Keshavjee explains that these Muslims "live looking for their own prosperity but always with the premise of valuing its passage through the world, leaving something more than what they came with." The Aga Khan Network is the institutional pole from which they operate. [link to visao.sapo.pt]
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