Hagia Sofia can once again become a mosque

The decision could be made on Thursday, or within the next 15 days, state news agency Anadolu reports.

Hagia Sofia was transformed from a mosque into a museum following a determination by Turkey’s former leader and compatriot Mustafa Kemal Atatürk in 1934. It was built by the Byzantines in the 500s, and was for almost a thousand years, until 1453, the largest church in Christianity.

The discussion of returning the building to a mosque creates a divide between secular, Christian and Islamic groups in Turkey. There are also fears that this will lead to increased tensions with Greece, which oppose the former Greek Orthodox Church to become a religious building again.

Since 1991, there has been a Muslim prayer room in Hagia Sofia, and since 2016 the building has had an imam.

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