Erdogan called change the status of Hagia Sophia step to great Turkey
Change the status of Hagia Sophia (Aya Sofia) in Istanbul is a step towards the great Turkey, with the opinion of other countries does not matter, said Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Earlier it was reported that the state Council, Turkey's highest administrative court - July 10, annulled the decision of 1934 the transformation of Hagia Sophia into a Museum. Immediately after that, Erdogan announced that he had signed a decree about the transformation of the Cathedral into a mosque and the beginning of Muslim worship there.
"We made the decision to change the status of Hagia Sophia based on the opinion of our people, not what they shall say of us," said Erdogan, the TV channel NTV, adding that the country will continue to "go the right way - to build a great and strong Turkey."
The Hagia Sophia was founded by the Christian Emperor Justinian, and was opened on 27 December 537. Cathedral over a thousand years was the largest Church in the Christian world. After the capture of Constantinople by the Ottomans and the fall of the Byzantine Empire in 1453, the Cathedral was converted into a mosque but since 1934 the building by decree of the founder of the modern Turkish state Kemal Ataturk became a Museum and was included in the world heritage list of UNESCO.
The decision to make Hagia Sophia a mosque has provoked a sharp reaction in many countries of the world.