SHAFAQNA (Shia International News Association)
A shiny new Islamic art museum and cultural center will open in Toronto next week, becoming the first of its kind in North America.
Bankrolled by Prince Karim Aga Khan, the spiritual leader of Ismaili Muslims, the facility will feature more than 1,000 artifacts — including rare scriptures of the Quran from the 7th and 8th centuries.
There are fine collections of Islamic art in museums throughout Canada and the United States, but this will be the first devoted entirely to such works when it welcomes visitors as of September 18.
The Can$300 million (US$274 million) Aga Khan Museum and adjacent Ismaili Center are sprawled over 6.8 hectares (17 acres), hoping to cater to Muslims and others.