| Danial Norjidi |
AMBASSADOR of the Russian Federation to Brunei Darussalam Vladlen Semivolos received a visit by six students from the Republic of Dagestan, Russia who are studying at Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA) yesterday.
The students are the first batch to come to Brunei within the framework of a Memorandum of Cooperation between Sheikh Muhammad Arif University and UNISSA signed in April 2018.
The ambassador said, “They are the first batch of our students in UNISSA. I am very proud that UNISSA is a pioneer of our cooperation in the education sphere. We have extensive contacts with UNISSA.
“I am very much proud that we have done a lot in this area. We consider the cooperation between the Muslim communities of our countries to be one of the milestones of our bilateral ties with Brunei.”
He highlighed that Russia’s ties with Brunei are growing in various fields especially in education, noting the visit of a batch of students from St Petersburg State University to Universiti Brunei Darussalam, where they studied for a whole term, in addition to the students currently studying at UNISSA.
“This means that our connections, our ties in the education sphere are expanded and we will do our best to continue with their expansion to a new level.
“I’m very much thankful to UNISSA for their cooperation, their help to us and their good-hearted relations that they have with our embassy, because this event would not be in place without their full cooperation,” he added.
Meanwhile, Director of the International and Public Relation Centre of UNISSA Haji Sammali bin Haji Adam said, “Our objective is to strengthen ties between Brunei and Russia. Also, we try to help students from Russia.” He noted that the visiting students arrived in January and are experts in Arabic Language. While at UNISSA, the students will study English Language as well as Brunei Studies and Al-Quran.
The ambassador said, “This cooperation is organised on the basis of bilateral agreements which we have with UNISSA. This is the agreement on not just studying but also the exchange of students.
“Of course, my hope is such exchanges will be regular and of course for us it would be a great honour to receive Bruneian students in our Islamic universities,” he said.
“We are very much hopeful that not only Russian students will be coming to study in Brunei but also Bruneian students will also visit our beautiful country and study in university.”
He added that UNISSA has signed agreements with seven Islamic universities in Russia.
Two of the students spoke on their experience in Brunei so far and what their hopes are for their time at UNISSA.
One of the students Shamil Omarov shared, “What impressed us the most was the warm welcome, the friendly and kind people. We’re hoping to deepen our expertise in English Language and to develop the skills and language to reach the highest possible level.”
He went on to add that their “lecturer is highly qualified and kind, and her explanations are understandable”. Another student, Saidov Muhammad said, “We would also like to leave warm memories in the hearts of Bruneians. We would like to justify the expectations of our leadership, because the leadership of our university cooperates closely with the leadership of UNISSA and we would like to leave warm memories in the hearts of everyone.”