Last week, the world was stunned to watch Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s move to convert the Hagia Sophia from a museum into a mosque, reversing the 1934 decision by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founding father of the secular republic of Turkey.
What many missed is that Turkey’s Islamist strongman also vowed that “the resurrection of Hagia Sophia heralds the liberation of the al-Aqsa Mosque.”
This is not the first time that Erdogan has called the Islamic world to unite against Israel and “liberate” Jerusalem.
Do Erdogan’s latest moves and rhetoric mark a new phase in his Islamist policies? Will the Turkish strongman pose a new threat to Israel? What are Erdogan’s ambitions in the Middle East and beyond?
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