The overwhelming majority of the voters for the ruling party AKP are in favor of converting Hagia Sophia in Constantinople from a museum into a mosque, as well as very high percentages of those who support three other Turkish parliamentary parties. In particular, according to a survey conducted under the auspices of the AKP party, nine out of ten voters for Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s party want to convert Hagia Sophia into a mosque.
Similar percentages of support for this option are presented in the ranks of the far-right nationalist party MHP of Devlet Bahçeli, while seven out of ten voters of the İYİ Party ( lit. ‘Good Party’) of Meral Akşener are positive in the prospect of converting Hagia Sophia into a mosque. Even in the ranks of the Kemalist Republican People’s Party (CHP), this prospect has gained the support of the 40% of the voters.
The poll, regarding its timing, is important because it was published just two weeks before the Turkish Supreme Court ruled on July 2 on the legitimacy of converting Hagia Sophia from a museum, as it has been operating since 1934 by a decision of Kemal Ataturk, into a mosque. In essence, the Turkish court will decide on the legality of overturning this 1934 law, which turned Hagia Sophia into a museum, which, is noted, is also an UNESCO protected world cultural heritage.
Already, AKP officials have publicly mentioned the work that will be done soon, in order Hagia Sophia to be laid with carpet and Christian frescoes to be covered. The goal is the first prayer in Hagia Sophia as a mosque to take place on July 15, on the fourth anniversary since the coup attempt against Recep Tayyip Erdogan in 2016.