Tobruk Museum Launches Educational Program to Maintain Identity

Tobruk Museum Launches Educational Program to Maintain Identity

Friday, 7 December, 2018 - 07:00
A man smiles next to Libyan flags in Benghazi February 17, 2013. REUTERS/Esam Al-Fetori
Cairo - Jamal Jawhar
Libya's Tobruk National Museum has established a program that aims at introducing the students of schools, universities and institutes to the history of their country and the most important battles that took place on its territory hundreds of years ago.

According to the museum management, the program, dubbed "Know Your Country's History," is a free educational process for all students, noting that the museum devoted one day a week so students can remember the phases their country witnessed throughout history, in order to maintain their national identity.

The Tobruk National Museum is an ancient building of an Italian-style church that has been transformed into a museum. It features artifacts such as Roman and Greek exhibits, weapons and soldiers dating back to the Second World War and Libya's war against Italy, along with other items belonging to Libyan soldiers who backed the allies under the so-called Libyan Arab force.

Mohamed El-Sawi, one of the museum's curators, told Asharq Al-Awsat: "The ‘Know Your Country's History’ program, launched by the museum in its third edition, aims to introduce students to the cultural diversity of the Libyan community, which includes Arabs, Toubous and Amazighs.”

The curator pointed out that the program focuses on introducing the different generations to Libya’s history in general, and Tobruk in particular, as well as explaining the history of World War II battles that took place in the city.

Sawi noted that the program "educates students, especially youngsters, about the popular heritage of the ancient Libyan civilization during the Islamic Conquest, in addition to the history of Sheikh Omar al-Mukhtar and his companions."

He also said the program includes briefs about the treaty of Lausanne inked in 1911 between Italy and the Ottoman Empire, under which Ottoman forces withdrew from Libya, and left the Libyans to fight the Italians on their own.

The French Association of Veterans donated seven murals featuring the battle of "Al-Hakim Well", which took place in 1942 in the Libyan Desert south of Tobruk.

Archaeological sites along the Libyan coast have been severely neglected in recent years, especially after the eruption of the conflict.

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