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Tajikistan Introduces New Islamic Curriculum To Schools

Islamic education will not be compulsory for Tajik students
Islamic education will not be compulsory for Tajik students
DUSHANBE -- The Tajik Education Ministry said that new books about Muslim customs and lessons about Islam's Hanafi branch will be used in schools next year.

Education Ministry official Jaloliddin Amirov said that those lessons will not be the major subject taught in schools, and that only pupils who are interested in the subject will study them.

Maruf Rahimov, a member of the Council of Islamic Scholars of Tajikistan, complained to RFE/RL's Tajik Service that the Education Ministry did not invite religious leaders to discuss the books.

Hoji Akbar Turajonzoda, a parliament member and former mufti of Tajikistan, said recently that textbooks in Tajik schools are written by people unfamiliar with Islam, and are full of mistakes. But ministry official Amirov said the new editions of the textbooks are accurate and the lessons will be taught by teachers with backgrounds in Islamic education.