Hagia Sophia conversion ‘Turkey’s domestic matter,’ says Moscow


Turkey’s decision to change the status of Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia from a museum to a mosque is a domestic issue not to be interfered with, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergey Vershinin has said, however stressing that the 6th-century structure,the Byzantine Empire's main cathedral, is “part of global culture and civilization.”

“You know that this matter has triggered a public outcry in our country and beyond. In general, we assume that this is Turkey’s domestic matter, which neither us nor anyone else should meddle in, obviously,” Vershinin was quoted by Russian media as saying on Monday.

“At the same time, we note the value of the building as a site that is part of global culture and civilization,” he added, according to the reports.