Source: Agenzia Fides – MIL OSI
Headline: ASIA/TURKEY – Turkish press: Erdogan seeks “a formula” to reopen St. Sophia to Islamic worship
Istanbul – Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has given instructions to change the statute of the monumental complex of Agyasofya, the ancient Byzantine Basilica currently open to the public as a simple museum, so that it can also be used again as a place of Islamic worship. This is what the Turkish media reported, starting with the Hürriyet newspaper. In the edition released on Friday 5 June, citing confidential sources, the Turkish newspaper reports that the plan to change the current status of Ayasofya was examined by Erdogan himself at a meeting of the central executive committee of his Party, the AKP , in power in Turkey since 2002. According to the anonymous sources cited, the Turkish President gave a mandate to those present to “Start working” in search of a formula that would make this change possible, taking into account that any restoration of the use of Agyasofya as an Islamic place of worship could take place without closing the building for tourist visits, “just like the Sultanahmet mosque “. Erdogan urged his interlocutors to carry out the project cautiously, taking into account the fact that the status of Agyasofya represents a ‘sensitive’ topic, on which, however, “Only our great nation can decide”.