The Council of State threw its weight behind a petition introduced by a spiritual group and annulled a 1934 cupboard choice that modified the sixth century constructing right into a museum. The ruling permits the federal government to restore the Hagia Sophia’s earlier standing as a mosque.
The choice was consistent with the Turkish president’s calls to flip the massively symbolic world heritage website right into a mosque regardless of widespread worldwide criticism, together with from the United States and Orthodox Christian leaders.
The choice may deepen tensions with neighboring Greece, which additionally referred to as on Turkey to keep the construction’s standing as a museum.
The spiritual group had contested the legality of the 1934 choice by the fashionable Turkish republic’s secular authorities ministers and argued that the constructing was the private property of Ottoman Sultan Mehmet II, who conquered Istanbul in 1453.