University of St Andrews, one of the most prestigious British universities, is to review the acceptance of the funding arranged by the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad. The work of one of its academic research centres will be reviewed for the university was granted more than £100,000 in funding for its centre for Syrian studies. The funding was held with the assistance of Syria's ambassador to the UK.
A spokesman for University of St Andrews added to his custom essay
that the university is going to check the centre's work "to ensure its high academic standards are maintained". In result of violent crackdown on pro-democracy demonstrators in Syria and international concerns over the recent events, the university's association with the Assad regime has come under investigation.
Funding for the centre was opened in November 2006 as part of the university's school of international relations. It was secured with the assistance of Khiyami and paid for by Syrian-born British businessman Ayman Asfari, according to the centre's head, Prof Raymond Hinnebusch
Many connections have been disclosed between a British university and an authoritarian Arab regime in recent times. Supporters of the centre believe that relations with Syria are necessary because it can be beneficial in tackling the reform and highlights the seriousness of the university’s academic work. However, critics claim that it is vital for British universities to be more vigilant before building strong ties with such regimes.