"Moving towards Sharia": how ordinary Turks reacted to the transformation of Hagia Sophia into a mosque

On July 24, 2020, in Istanbul, at the Hagia Sophia (Hagia Sophia Mosque), for the first time in 86 years, namaz, a canonical prayer, was held. The last time something like this happened in this place was in 1934, at the same time the founder of the modern secular Turkish state Kemal Ataturk decided to turn the monument of Byzantine architecture into a museum.

A correspondent visited the site RIA News"However, many who came politely refused to comment on what was happening to the media from Russia. The opinions of those who agreed to assess the situation were divided.

One part of the respondents was delighted with the transformation of the cathedral into a mosque. They believe that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan did everything right. In 1453 Sultan Mehmet II (the Turks call him Fatih) conquered Constantinople and turned the Patriarchal Orthodox Cathedral into a mosque. Today's Turkish nationalists call this a "symbol of victory" and believe that their country has become "great" again. The second - does not agree with such statements. In their opinion, Erdogan is trying to divert the attention of ordinary citizens from economic difficulties, drowning people's discontent in populism.

We have been waiting for this for 86 long years. From the moment of its conquest, Hagia Sophia has been the main symbol of our victory, and finally historical justice has been restored

- says the owner of one of the small clothing stores Abdullah.

This is a historic event. Finally, now we can pray here in the great Hagia Sophia mosque. Our dream came true thanks to the president, who by the will of Allah makes our country great again, like in the time of Sultan Fatih

- said Nuri, who came to the prayer.

The fact that the Hagia Sophia, created by Christians, is forcibly transmitted to another religion, jars me. The best decision was made by Ataturk: ​​the status of a museum suits everyone - both Muslims and Christians, does not bother anyone. The transformation of Hagia Sophia into a mosque means that it has been announced to the world: the country is moving from a secular republican regime to a Sharia regime

- declared the Turk, who introduced himself as Jesurkhan.

Here is Hagia Sophia for everyone, let's rejoice at how great we are. Of course, asking people about the economy after such a "victory" will seem to be inconvenient

- convinced Hasan, an employee of the local currency exchange bureau.

Note that Erdogan also took part in the prayer, who, before the start of the service, recited the first surah from the Koran - "Al-Fatiha" (Opener). The Turkish leader is not flirting with local nationalists and religious radicals. He himself is an inveterate nationalist, modestly calling his views "political Islam."

His entire life path proves this since 1973, when he graduated from a religious lyceum. In 1976 he became the chairman of the youth cell of the National Salvation Party. In the 1980s, he achieved an ascent to the highest echelon of the Welfare Party, and in 2001 he organized the Justice and Development Party. All of these structures are Islamist.
  • Photos used: Arild Vågen / wikimedia.org
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  1. Valentine Offline Valentine
    Valentine (Valentin) 25 July 2020 13: 30
    Why do we again climb into someone else's mosque with our charter: This is their country and their property, and they are free to dispose of it as they please.
    1. Tramp1812 Offline Tramp1812
      Tramp1812 (Tramp 1812) 25 July 2020 17: 35
      Quote: Valentine
      Why do we again climb into someone else's mosque with our charter, this is their country and their property, and they are free to dispose of it as they please.

      The change in the status of Sofia is a stroke in the change in the course of Turkey. Both in domestic and foreign policy. And the main question: a cardinal revision of Ataturk's legacy in the country, imperial ambitions in foreign policy. The imposed radical Islam in Turkey will lead to an increase in tension in the Middle East and the Balkans. And no one will be able to stay on the sidelines. And this cannot but worry Egypt, Israel, Libya, Armenia, Greece, Russia, and the United States. Domino principle: everything will fall down. And any local conflict, between the same Armenia and Azerbaijan, or Egypt and Turkey, or anything else, can become a fuse-cord. Therefore, I would not consider the change in the status of Sofia in any property, or confessional aspects.
      1. Valentine Offline Valentine
        Valentine (Valentin) 25 July 2020 17: 53
        Erdogan has long dreamed of universal pan-Turkism, the revival of the Ottoman Empire, and now they are undergoing de-ataturkization, as well as decommunization all over the world, so these waves of such trends will not bypass most countries, maybe, except for China, tanks will not forget there for a long time. Tiananmen, and even here in the North Caucasus, they began to dump our monuments to the conquerors (conquerors) of the Caucasus.
        1. Tramp1812 Offline Tramp1812
          Tramp1812 (Tramp 1812) 25 July 2020 20: 08
          Yes of course. Everything in the world is changing with kaleidoscopic speed.
    2. Bitter Offline Bitter
      Bitter 26 July 2020 00: 30
      Why are we climbing again ...

      In some ways, you are right, Boris Nikolayich and his company made so much effort to bring Russia out from everywhere and suddenly again! wassat
      But on the other hand, this is not a pebble in the Greek garden, it is a clear sign to the whole world about the revival of another Turkey. The very way the head Turkish priest came to namaz has already been interpreted by many experts as a challenge, or as a call to fight. I wonder how Mr. Kadyrov has already planned a trip to the new-old Constantinople mosque? The Russian authorities played so mysteriously with Erdogan, as if they themselves did not have to rake this shit at a high price.
      1. Vladimir Tuzakov (Vladimir Tuzakov) 31 July 2020 10: 45
        An idea is needed for the state and its foundation. Here R. Erdogan, on the idea of ​​Muslim Ottomanism, strengthens and revives the spirit of Turkish statehood, which is the main thing for states in this troubled world. Russia, on the contrary, has lost the old idea that holds it together, and today it dangles like a ship without a rudder or sails - a clear road to the decline of states. This is what we see when citizens rob their country and run en masse ... For Russia there is still an opportunity to be reborn with the idea of ​​a center for uniting all Slavs, all Slavic states on an equal basis, then the revival of the state will have meaning and a future. All Slavs fit into such a powerful alliance, from Orthodox, Catholics, to Muslims ... Of course, there are many enemies for such a choice, because the Slavs have always been divided and played off, which we see even on the example of Ukraine ... For Russia, this choice unites and gives perspective ideas is a choice between life and death ...
        1. Bitter Offline Bitter
          Bitter 31 July 2020 22: 09
          Erdogan on the idea of ​​Muslim Ottomanism holds ...

          From conversations with some colleagues, Turkish citizens, I heard that the "ideas" of Ataturk are more approved by the majority of educated and sober-minded people than Erdogan's "fundamental restructuring". But these are becoming less and less, the authorities of Erdogashi are working with the people.

          Russia, on the contrary, has lost the old idea that holds together ...

          Not lost, its remains are still being corroded by all possible forces and means. Although the authorities offer for almost everyone, on a voluntary-compulsory basis, Orthodox braces. Churches and temples are riveted like hot cakes. On TV they are already showing (almost advertising) how whole villages people accept baptism and faith. Soon, it will probably be difficult for atheists, Buddhists and someone else to get a job in the civil service, and those who already serve there on the basis of recommendations will be baptized and formalized.

          we see when citizens rob their country and run en masse ...

          Ha, so they just have corresponding "positive" examples at the top of "Olympus". Moreover, many of Putin's Olympians since Yeltsin's "golden" nineties have been at the trough and have grown to their chairs so that only death can separate them from the authorities.

          ... the Slavs have always been divided and pitted, which we see even in the example of Ukraine ...

          They always played off and everyone who succeeded, the Slavs are no exception. Two are fighting, the third is gaining. Back in the same 90s, the authorities in charge of the "bros" sold it banally, and cheaply, and left Ukraine, leaving the nominal ambassador, just for show. None of the "leaders" needed it as a friendly one, neither Ukrainian nor Russian. Everyone was doing business and selling everything and everyone.
          Ukraine, like Russia, is also a multi-confessional state, therefore it would make sense to leave religion outside politics there too. A secular multi-confessional state should be separated from the churches, otherwise "swan, cancer, and pike" are provided and there is no prospect.
          1. Vladimir Tuzakov (Vladimir Tuzakov) 1 August 2020 09: 56
            The authorities of the Russian Federation from the time of EBN to this day, those same liberals have nominated a "patriot" of the GDP, and under this patriot cover they continue to plunder and destroy Russia (none of the presidential decrees has been executed !!!) .... As for Russia and the Slavs, here all the neighbors for centuries have purposefully zealous in the separation and play off the Slavs. As a last example, all military insignia, banners, regalia of Ukraine are entirely German-Austrian copies. Since WWI, when they created independent Ukraine (during the occupation by the Germans), laid the foundations of an anti-Russian Ukraine, etc.