Speaking on the Turkish television channel Kanal 7, when asked if there was a plan to convert Hagia Sophia into a Muslim mosque after the Greek reactions, President Erdoğan’s spokesperson, İbrahim Kalın, said that the issue found itself in the headlines from time to time.
However, instead of giving a specific answer, he referred to statements already made by President Erdoğan who had urged Turkish Muslims “to first fill the Sultan Ahmed Mosque – also known as the Blue Mosque – and then the issue of Hagia Sophia will be considered.” It is noted that the Blue Mosque sits next to the Hagia Sophia.
Kalın also argued that “the conquest of Constantinople is not a simple historical event. By reducing it only to the subject of Hagia Sophia, this event loses the splendor of this conquest. The discussion on this subject has sometimes been conducted in good faith, but the focus is sometimes placed on the other direction and we lose the most important thing. “What is the spirit of conquest?” “Reading the Quran in the Hagia Sophia and especially the passage for the conquest is the spirit of the conquest of Constantinople,” Kalın said.
The presidential spokesperson added that when Muhammad the Conqueror entered Constantinople, “Hagia Sophia was a dilapidated and forgotten building, but the spirit of conquest was what kept Hagia Sophia upright and made Constantinople a world city.”