Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy and Constantinople Governor Ali Yerlikaya visited Hagia Sophia on Sunday to inspect the site ahead of its conversion into a mosque.
At the same time, new information is coming to light about the changes that will take place in Hagia Sophia in order to turn it into a mosque.
- The carpet of 14,000 square meters is ready – The order was placed in June and was paid for by the Turkish presidency itself.
- Symbols that should not be in the Hagia Sophia because they will not be in line with its function as a mosque will be transferred and exhibited elsewhere.
- Two imams and four muezzins will be appointed – The main criterion is… a good voice.
- Verses from the Quran will be heard inside the monument for 24 hours
- Hagia Sophia will be open every day for all five prayers.
- Tourists will be able to see the mosaics at specific times without paying admission fee.
- There will be special arrangements for visitors so that they can not approach the place where the Muslim prayer will take place.
At the same time, according to information, almost all tickets have been purchased by faithful from Muslim countries who will travel to Constantinople on July 24 for the first prayer. Hundreds of people from all over Turkey flock to Constantinople to see and take a picture in front of Hagia Sophia, following the decision to turn the monument into a mosque and to pray even in its courtyard.
Hagia Sophia does not change its name
In an interview with “A Haber” channel, the president of the Directorate of Religious Affairs of Turkey, Ali Erbaş, assured that the name of Hagia Sophia would not be changed, as in 1453 it was called “Great Mosque of Ayasofya,” while ruling out the possibility of VIP invitations in the first prayer to be held on July 24. He also claimed that the conversion of Hagia Sophia into a mosque would break the curse of Mehmed the Conqueror, according to which those who use Hagia Sophia beyond the intended purpose are cursed.
“May this decision break this curse that falls to this nation,” said Ali Erbaş.