Archbishop Anastasios of Albania made a new statement about Hagia Sophia.
As he stressed in the Greek newspaper Ta Nea, Turkey’s intolerant attitude towards its decision on Hagia Sophia is not only a kind of cultural “jihad” (“Holy War”) at a time when jihadists are condemned internationally, but also it is an insult both against Christianity and Islam.
“They converted the wonderful church of indivisible Christianity into a mosque. They try to cover up its beautiful face, to make its wonderful icons useless, and to hide its expressive eyes,” he stressed. He also said, “In addition, they inaugurate a strange type of mosque, which is strange to the classical Islamic one, with Christian icons being covered up, which in their eloquent silence do not cease to bear testament to the Christian truth. I do not know whether there is any similar Islamic place of worship in the world.”
“The stubbornness of the Turkish authorities underscores what we have been highlighting in recent decades: violence in the name of religion violates the sanctity of religion itself. And no one, no matter how strong and great one thinks one is, has the right to despise this universal truth,” he concluded.