Hagia Sophia Will Return From Museum To Mosque11/07/2020
The world-famous Hagia Sophia museum in Istanbul was originally founded as cathedral will return from museum to mosque.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan announces the news after a court annulled the site’s museum status. BBC reports.
The most visited site in Turkey was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral until it converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest in 1453.
But, it became a museum and is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
It was modern Turkey’s founder Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, who decreed that it should be a museum. But, President Erdogan is now a step closer to dismantle Ataturk’s secular legacy.
However, there are harsh criticism from across the world including from UNESCO.
UN’s Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization added in a statement, “This inscription entails a number of legal commitments and obligations. Thus, a State must ensure that no modification is made to the outstanding universal value of the property inscribed on its territory”.
”Any modification requires prior notification by the State concerned to UNESCO and then, if necessary, examination by the World Heritage Committee.”
Furthermore, the UNESCO calls to the Turkish authorities, “to initiate dialogue without delay, in order to prevent any detrimental effect on the universal value of this exceptional heritage, the state of conservation of which will be examined by the World Heritage Committee at its next session.”
UNESCO’s Assistant Director-General for Culture, Ernesto Ottone adds, “It is important to avoid any implementing measure, without prior discussion with UNESCO, that would affect physical access to the site, the structure of the buildings, the site’s moveable property, or the site’s management,”.
Meanwhile, UNESCO warns this measure will “constitute breaches of the rules derived from the 1972 World Heritage Convention”.
With 3.7 million visitors a year, Hagia Sophia is symbol of people from interfaith religions. In particularly among Muslims and Christians.
It history began in the year 537 when Byzantine emperor Justinian built the huge church overlooking the Golden Horn harbour.
It has huge dome, there are some people believe as the world’s largest church and building.
While, you are considering to visit a religious sacred place. There are most important rules you need to know.