ROCHESTER, Minn., Oct. 19 (UPI) -- Minnesota's Mayo Clinic has disclosed a $25 million gift from an Arab sheikh widely known for his generosity and commitment to religious tolerance.
The president of the United Arab Emirates underwent neck surgery at the Mayo Clinic in 1996, at which time he pledged $25 million in support of Mayo's mission "to provide the finest medical care to current and future patients without regard to race or creed from all countries of the world," the Star Tribune reported Tuesday.
With that money in hand the clinic said Monday it would disclose the gift, the donor and name a new cardiovascular treatment center after Sheik Zayed bin Sultan al-Nahyan, 86. A dedication of the center is planned for next year.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center has hailed the sheik as unique among Arab heads of state for his condemnation of anti-Semitism.
In 2000 the sheik gave $200,000 to Columbia University to help fund a professorship in modern Arab studies and literature. Susan Brown, assistant vice president of public affairs for the university, said the purpose of the endowed chair "was the exact opposite of intolerance."