By Asma al-Mohattwari
On October 21, 2012 Prime Minister Mohammed Basindowa and Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister Dr. Ahmet Davutoğlu inaugurated the Turkish International School (TIS) in Sana’a.
The ceremony was attended by Minister of Education Abdulrazaq Al-ashwal, Sana’a Governor Jameel Abdul-Ghani, Capital Secretariat Abdul-Qader Hilal and a number of other important Turkish and Yemeni political and business figures.
The TIS began its activities in Yemen in 1998 and currently has branches in Sana’a, Taiz and Aden, as well as a ‘Kids Academy’ in Sana’a.
The new campus, situated in Sana’a’s ‘Asr area, was built on a 25,000 square meter plot of land and has a junior section and separate female and male sections for seniors.
Davutoğlu expressed warm feelings towards Yemen, and said, “It’s a great honor to open the school in Sana’a following the crises that Yemen passed through in recent times.”
Davutoğlu delivered specific messages to businessmen, educational staff, and parents and students, and thanked them all for their part in strengthening relations between Turkey and Yemen.
After students sang both countries’ national anthems, Davutoğlu said, “The students’ performance of the Yemeni and Turkish national anthems gives an indication of strong relations between the two countries in the future,” said Davutoğlu.
For his part, Prime Minister Basindowa said that Turkey and Yemen have strong relations now, but that they also did so in the past. He said he had received very good treatment when he had visited Turkey.
“The Turkish International School is the only school which uses the ‘Smart Board’ [an interactive whiteboard used in classrooms] in Yemen, and I wish all Yemeni schools would follow suit,” he said.
Following the school’s inauguration ceremony, attendees were invited to a ceremony to celebrate the opening of a Turkish International Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA).
The TIKA office will be responsible for handling Turkish development aid to Yemen, and will oversee efforts in Yemen’s education, health and transportation fields.