Hagia Sophia

‘Jerusalem is ours’: Behind Erdogan’s remarkable claim – Haaretz.com

To Turkey’s leader, what’s good for Hagia Sophia, Istanbul’s church-turned-mosque, is apparently appropriate for Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre as well Recep Tayyip Erdogan has news for Jerusalemites: “Jerusalem is ours. One of our cities,” the Turkish president declared last Thursday at the opening of the legislative session of the Turkish parliament in Ankara. …

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Rapprochement with Turkey Requires Ankara’s Respect for Religious Freedom – The National Interest

The real problem, however, are the lobbyists, both official and unofficial, Turkish diplomats, and those with vested business interests in Turkey who purposely obfuscate Turkey’s reality. Throughout the Cold War and for a decade after, Turkey was perhaps America’s top partner in the region. U.S. presidents and secretaries of state spoke of the “special relationship”  …

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“Preposterous” US-Turkey Deal Could Lead to Pillage of Cultural Heritage – GreekReporter.com

In these days of severely heightened tensions originating from Turkey’s repeated incursions into the waters of the Eastern Mediterranean in search of oil and gas, even the sending of warships to accompany drilling vessels there, it appears yet another threat looms on the horizon. However, this specter has to do with something quite different — …

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Sanctions can persuade Turkey’s Erdogan to end reckless policies – Arab News

At the EU summit on Sept. 24-25, European leaders will decide whether or not to impose sanctions on Turkey. Most of them agree on confirming the existence of obnoxious Turkish policies, guided by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in Syria and Libya, with Hamas and the Muslim Brotherhood, and not least in the Eastern Mediterranean, which …

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Why Mediterranean tensions may not benefit Erdogan at home – Al Monitor

Is Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan using tensions in the Mediterranean to boost his domestic approval and win the yet-unannounced-but-constantly-rumored snap elections? Many of his opponents think so. In his “A Look at the Week” show with Rusen Cakir on the independent news platform Medyascope on Aug. 28, the journalist Kemal Can underlined an interesting …

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Hagia Sophia: Worshippers take part in first Muslim prayers at landmark in 86 years – Euronews

Fulfilling a dream of his Islamic-oriented youth, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan joined hundreds of worshipers on Friday for the first Muslim prayers in 86 years inside Hagia Sophia. The Istanbul landmark once served as one of Christendom’s most significant cathedrals, a mosque and a museum before its conversion back into a Muslim place of …

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Erdogan’s Hagia Sophia Speech (English translation) – Medium

On July 10, 2020, a Turkish court cleared the way for the Hagia Sophia to be converted from a museum back into a mosque. That same day, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan delivered a speech lauding the “resurrection” of the Hagia Sophia. No full English transcript of that speech has been made available, although a …

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Turkey: The “Reconquest” of Hagia Sophia, a Bad Movie – OrientXXI

On 19th July, President Recep Tayyib Erdoğan took himself to Hagia Sophia to check on preparations for the first Friday prayer, which was to coincide—what a historical clash!—with the anniversary of the Treaty of Lausanne (24 July 1923), the foundation of Turkish territorial sovereignty regained after the 1919–1923 war of independence. The “reconquest” of Hagia Sophia was …

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Erdogan plays out Islamic ‘Reconquista’ with Hagia Sophia as backdrop – Al Monitor

The reconversion of Hagia Sophia, a symbol of Istanbul and a marvel of Byzantine art, into a mosque is a historic moment. The controversial move, put in motion by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s decree, could fairly be seen as the Turkish Reconquista. Istanbul was Constantinopole in 1453 when it was conquered by the Muslim-Turkish Ottomans …

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Hagia Sophia is too complex for Erdoğan’s cleansing – The Guardian – Opinion

The president’s decision to turn Istanbul’s Byzantine cathedral back into a mosque seeks to erase the past “Solomon, I have outdone thee.” So remarked Justinian, the Roman emperor who commissioned Hagia Sophia, the great cathedral at the heart of Constantinople, now Istanbul. Throughout its history it has been a source of wonder and debate. Now, …

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The Conquest Verse and downward spiral in Turkey-Greece ties – Duvar

Relations between Turkey and the European Union may indeed be back on track, but which track is that exactly? Just when I had given credit to EU-Turkey rapprochement, despite my usually pessimistic self, the usual flare-ups with Greece started up again. Can there be an EU-Turkey rapprochement despite Ankara’s “troubles” with Athens? As Turkey declares …

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