Pope Francis Speak Up On The Turkish Government Decree Against Turning Hagia Sophia Into A Mosque

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Pope Francis said, on Sunday, has come out to say “he’s very distressed” over Turkey’s decision to convert the Byzantine-era monument, Hagia Sophia, back into a mosque.

In the Vatican’s first reaction to the Turkish government decision, He said “My thoughts go to Istanbul. I’m thinking about Hagia Sophia. I am very distressed”.

Hagia Sophia was first constructed as a cathedral in the Christian Byzantine empire but was converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest of Constantinople in 1453.

In 1934, A Turkish top court canceled a cabinet decision under modern Turkey’s secularizing founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, to preserve the church-turned-mosque as a museum. Thereafter, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, on Friday signed a decree announcing the reverting of Hagia Sophia to a mosque.

The Turkish government decision has so far drawn international criticism.

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