Greece to impose sanctions on Turkey over Hagia Sophia conversion

Hagia Sophia

UNESCO sent letter to Turkey regarding turning Hagia Sophia into a mosque

Greece will be imposing sanctions against Turkey for its decision to convert Hagia Sophia into a mosque.

"Erdoğan made a historic mistake, a mistake that creates a gap, I hope it is not bridged," government spokesman Stelios Petsas told SKAI earlier. Petsas emphasised that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan made a "wrong decision".

"Greece condemns this action and will do everything in its power to have consequences for Turkey," he said, adding that "everything is on the table and the possibility of sanctions not only from Europe but also from international organisations, such as UNESCO."

He added that "there is no doubt that we will proceed with some form of sanctions," without giving further details what these sanctions will entail.

"Anyone who violates international law must understand that for this delinquent behaviour there are sanctions that hurt," said Petsas. "The issue of Hagia Sophia is an international issue. The only sure thing is that such a delinquent behaviour and such a great insult should have a similar response."

Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis, provoked by the decision of Erdoğan to sign the decree for the conversion of Hagia Sophia into a mosque, in a written statement on Friday night expressed the unequivocal condemnation of Greece.

"Greece strongly condemns Turkey's decision to turn Hagia Sophia into a mosque. This decision - and in fact 85 years since its proclamation as a museum - offends its universal character. It is a choice that also offends all those who recognise the monument as a property of world culture. And, of course, it affects not only Turkey's relations with Greece. But also its relations with the European Union, UNESCO and the global community as a whole. It is unfortunate that the Turkish leadership, which worked for the Alliance of Civilizations in 2005, is now choosing to move in the opposite direction," he said.

  1. I think the solution is pretty obvious. The Hagi Sophia should stay in the hands of the state and the large area remain a common area that can be used on Friday, Saturday and Sunday for religious services. And possibly rooms in other sections with separate entrances be used for the offices and small prayer rooms for any week day meetings. This way several regions could Rent space, provide some money for upkeep and the general public could have access to the heritage managed by they State. And Obviously there building should be restored to its original as best as possible. I notice the lights are not right, the signs up with Arabic writing are not right. And some other symbols and Elements have been added. These recent attempts to deface should be removed, and if there is to be any lighting it should be done in a hidden way to avoid destroying its original structure.

  2. I think the solution is obvious. The state should own the property and the main area should be a common area. The different religions could hold services on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. in the common area, but the Public otherwise would have access to the historical building. And these Regions would rent space having one of the rooms which they cannot change, but can use as a office and prayer room etc. for other times with separate entrances with the agreement not to interfere with other activities on the site. IF those Jews, Christians and Muslims for example divide up the day they have so that two different Muslim groups or two different Jewish groups could have services then the chapel, could be called a chapel of Peace.

  3. WHERE are Orthodox Archdiocese world wide speaking out? The Anglicans pseaking out? The Catholics? etc WHERE ARE YOU, or don’t any of you really CARE?