Turkey converts one other former Byzantine church into mosque

Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque

Turkey has ordered the re-conversion of Istanbul’s Chora (Kariye) church, which has served as a museum since 1945, right into a mosque and opened it to worship, based on a presidential decree revealed within the Official Gazette on Friday.

Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Credit score: WikiCommons

The decree said that the positioning has been transferred to the administration of the Directorate of Spiritual Affairs (Diyanet) and will likely be opened for Muslim worship in accordance with Article 35 of the Legislation on the Institution and Duties of the Presidency of Spiritual Affairs. The transfer comes shortly after an identical determination to re-convert Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia right into a mosque from a museum.

Positioned in Istanbul’s Fatih district, the Church of the Holy Saviour in Chora was constructed as a part of a monastery advanced within the fourth century through the Byzantine period. It was transformed right into a mosque round 50 years after the Ottoman conquest of town in 1453. It was become a museum by a Council of Ministers decree in 1945.

In November 2019, Turkey’s Council of State – Turkey’s highest administrative court docket – dominated that the 1945 determination to alter its standing to a museum was illegal. However the change in its standing to a mosque had not been applied till Friday’s decree.

In July, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan additionally introduced the opening of the Hagia Sophia to Muslim worship after the Council of State dominated that the constructing’s conversion to a museum by trendy Turkey’s founding statesman was unlawful.

Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Credit score: WikiCommons

The Hagia Sophia, initially constructed as a Byzantine cathedral in 537, was become a mosque following the Ottoman conquest of Istanbul on Might 29, 1453, after which turned a museum in 1935 beneath Mustafa Kemal Atatürk’s presidency.

Over time, Erdoğan has repeatedly prompt turning the UNESCO World Heritage Website right into a mosque once more to fulfil a long-standing demand by Turkey’s Islamists.

The primary Friday prayers had been held on the Hagia Sophia on July 24, throughout which its Christian iconography and mosaics had been lined up in adherence to Islamic follow which bans depictions of dwelling beings in locations of worship.

The choice to alter the standing of the Chora raises questions on what’s going to occur to its in depth Byzantine mosaics and frescoes. Just like the Hagia Sophia, the Chora constructing can also be a UNESCO World Heritage website.

Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque
 Turkey converts another former Byzantine church into mosque Credit: WikiCommons
Credit score: WikiCommons

The Ottoman Turks hid its art work beneath layers of plaster. Following its reconversion right into a museum, the mosaics and frescos had been restored and have been on show since 1958.

Turkey has additionally not too long ago turned different notable church-turned-mosques-turned museums again into mosques together with Hagia Sophias in İznik and Trabzon.

On Aug. 11, Pill journal cited French historian Fabrice Monnier saying that the Chora is a unique case, as a result of extent of its art work.

“Its stunning mosaics and frescos cowl nearly all of the church’s partitions and domes,” he stated. “It will be exhausting to think about it being returned right into a mosque with out completely overlaying them over.”

Supply: Ahval [August 21, 2020]

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