Turkey: motion in Parliament for Hagia Sophia mosque

At initiative of MP close to anti-Erdogan preacher

07 May, 10:39

    The Hagia Sophia Byzantine basilica in Istanbul The Hagia Sophia Byzantine basilica in Istanbul

    (ANSAmed) - ANNKARA - A lawmaker, Hami Yildrim, who recently left the AKP party of Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has recently presented a motion to turn Istanbul's famous Hagia Sophia Byzantine basilica into a mosque, Huurriyet online reports.
    The initiative of the deputy, who is considered close to the Islamic brotherhood of preacher Fetullah Gulen - a former ally who has become a political foe of the Turkish premier - is the latest move in an ongoing campaign to turn the worldwide Christian symbol into a mosque. At the end of April, the daily Radikal wrote that Erdogan himself intended to pray with other Islamic leaders in Hagia Sophia ahead of presidential elections in August, perhaps already on May 29 on the anniversary of the conquest of then-Constantinople by the Ottomans in 1453. After the fall of the Byzantine empire's capital, sultan Mehmet II ordered to turn the basilica into a mosque. The basilica was turned into a museum in 1934 by the founder of modern secular Turkey Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. (ANSAmed).

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