China has begun to build its first museum featuring Islamic history and culture in Quanzhou, a coastal city in Fujian Province, known as the start of the "Silk Road on the sea" to the Arab world about 1,000 years ago.
With a designed floor space of 6,000 square meters, the three- story museum will house Islamic steles and carvings, Islamic tomb covers, and the statue of a famous Islamic traveler on the first floor.
Two exhibition halls on the second floor will be devoted to the history of the local Islamic society and Arabic customs.
There will be an Islamic culture institute and Islamic library on the third floor.
The museum, expected to cost 21 million yuan (US$2.5 million), is scheduled to open to visitors by the end of next year.
(Xinhua News Agency 07/24/2001)