Erdogan promises Putin to safeguard Christian shrines in Hagia Sophia

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Russian President Vladimir Putin. Photo: ria.ru

During a telephone conversation with Vladimir Putin, the Turkish president promised to keep access to Hagia Sophia for all comers and to preserve its shrines.

On July 13, 2020, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan promised Russian President Vladimir Putin to ensure the safety of Christian shrines of Hagia Sophia which had been converted into a mosque. The results of the telephone conversation between the Heads of two States were reported in the Kremlin press service.

“Vladimir Putin drew the attention of Recep Tayyip Erdogan to a significant public outcry in Russia caused by the decision to change the status of Hagia Sophia in Istanbul,” the press service said. “The President of Turkey gave relevant explanations, noting that access to this unique monument of world civilization will be guaranteed for all comers, including foreign citizens, and Christian shrines will be preserved.”

On July 10, the Turkish State Council announced that Hagia Sophia would become a mosque.

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