Russian Orthodox Church Says ‘Unacceptable’ to Turn Hagia Sophia Into a Mosque: Ifax
MOSCOW — Converting Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia monument from a museum to a mosque would be “unacceptable”, a senior official in the Russian Orthodox Church said on Saturday.
Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan has proposed restoring the mosque status of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, a sixth century building at the heart of both the Christian Byzantine and Muslim Ottoman empires and now one of Turkey’s most visited monuments.
“We can’t go back to the Middle Ages now,” Metropolitan Hilarion, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s department for external church relations, said on state television, the Interfax news agency reported.
“We live in a multipolar world, we live in a multi-confessional world and we need to respect the feelings of believers.”
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