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Turkey's Erdogan signs decree converting Hagia Sophia into mosque

Police officers stand guard in front of the Hagia Sophia or Ayasofya, after a court decision that paves the way for it to be converted from a museum back into a mosque, in Istanbul, Turkey, July 10, 2020. REUTERS/Murad Sezer

ISTANBUL (Reuters) - President Tayyip Erdogan signed a decree on Friday opening Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia as a mosque after a Turkish court annulled a 1934 government decree that had turned it into a museum, a copy of the decision showed.

Erdogan shared on his Twitter feed a copy of the decree he had signed which said the decision had been taken to hand control of the Ayasofya Mosque, as it is known in Turkish, to the country’s religious directorate and reopen it for worship.

Reporting by Daren Butler; Editing by Jonathan Spicer