Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that the conversion of Hagia Sophia into a mosque will not impact Turkish-Russian relations. Petrov said that Moscow regards this as an "internal affair" of Turkey.
A Turkish court on July 2 heard a case about converting Istanbul's sixth century Hagia Sophia back into a mosque and will announce its verdict within 15 days, a lawyer said, on an issue which has drawn international expressions of concern. Greece said Turkey risked opening up "a huge emotional chasm" with Christian countries if it pressed ahead with the proposal to convert Hagia Sophia into a mosque.
Diyanet head Ali Erbaş has announced the resumption of five-time congregational prayers at mosques across Turkey. Mosques were only open for noon, afternoon and Friday prayers.
Relations between Turkey and the European Union may indeed be back on track, but which track is that exactly? Just when I had given credit to EU-Turkey rapprochement, despite my usually pessimistic self, the usual flare-ups with Greece started up again.
May 29 saw the first Friday congregational prayers being held in Turkey's mosques since the coronavirus outbreak. Limits were set on the number of worshippers and the ground was marked to ensure social distancing, Diyanet said.
Turkey's top cleric Ali Erbaş has announced that 1,003 animals will be sacrificed at mosques across the country to mark the resumption of communal prayers. As Turkey has started to ease containment measures, mosques will allow congregations for two daytime prayers (noon and afternoon) as well as Friday prayers starting on May 29.
Turkey’s top religious authority mandates masks and social distancing for worshippers as mosques reopen
Turkey's Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet) mandated facemasks and social distancing inside mosques, which will reopen after months of closure on May 29. The Diyanet also urged congregations to conduct mass prayers outside and visitors to perform ablutions at home, rather than at public sinks in mosques.
Turkish prosecutors changed the nature of charges against former CHP politician Banu Özdemir so that the court could remand her in custody. Özdemir faces charges for sharing the story of "Bella Ciao" played out of speakers from the mosques in Izmir last week.
The Italian resistance song “Bella Ciao” was on May 20 broadcast simultaneously from several mosque minarets in Turkey's western province of İzmir. The provincial religious directorate issued a statement regarding this unusual recital saying their central adhan system had been sabotaged by unidentified people.
A document titled "COVID-19 normalization plan" with the presidential seal raised question marks in terms of its authenticity on social media, as the file can't be found on any official website. A number of Turkish media outlets reported that the PDF wasn't authentic and that no "normalization plan" was officially announced.
Tarık Çelenk, an academic from the right-wing political tradition in Turkey, says that the main reason why the Turkish right has not been able to develop a methodology and discipline of its own is because it is dogmatic. "Though rural national bourgeois revolution occurred in Anatolia, the Anatolian tigers behind it never had an intellectual leader to support and promote their ideals," he told Duvar's İslam Özkan.
Turkey’s relaxation of COVID-19 precautions will be discussed in a cabinet meeting today. While food businesses and hair salons will reportedly open in May, tourism, transportation and cultural activities are expected to pick back up in June, according to a pro-government journalist who often gets a tip-off from President Erdoğan's inner cabinet.
Turkey’s Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) held the only communal Friday prayer in the country March 27, a practice that was temporarily banned to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The official statement noted that very few members of the congregation were in attendance and that they took precautions against the virus.
Turkey's Directorate of Religious Affairs (Diyanet) has suspended all congregational prayers in mosques, including traditional Friday prayers, amid coronavirus fears. “Including the Friday prayers, congregational prayers will be suspended in mosques. During this period, instead of Friday prayers, [Muslims] can perform noon prayers [at home],” Diyanet head Ali Erbaş said.