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Kabul welcomes first foreign students in decades

Afghanistan’s oldest university has welcomed its first international students in decades despite continuing war in the country. Forty Turkish students arrived at Kabul University to start four year degrees in subjects such as Islamic studies, science, Dari literature and English.

A number of other countries have proposed sending students under similar agreements.

“The admission of Turkish students in our university will strengthen our relations with Turkey, and at the same time it indicates the enhancing education quality of Afghanistan that has attracted these students to study in our country,” said Afghani minister of higher education, Obaidullah Obaid.

The students will study toward a bachelors degree at no cost

The students will study towards a bachelors degree at no cost. Officials say a number of other countries have proposed sending students to the university under similar agreements.

Established in 1930, Kabul University welcomed many international students before it was “devastated by decades of wars and instabilities” in the country, said Obaid.

The new addition of male and female Turkish students affirm its mission to rebuild and “maintain close links with national and international universities and institutions in academic and research fields”.

Signalling further progression the university’s Confucius Institute, established on the campus in 2008, re-opened Sunday after closing in 2010 due to security concerns. Currently one Chinese teacher and two other instructors are teaching around 100 Afghan students elementary Mandarin.

Last month, Obaid confirmed that Afghanistan’s Ministry of Higher Education had established a new modernised curriculum and would seek to establish relationships with foreign universities. The curriculum is to be rolled out across the country soon.

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