Turkey: historic Armenian church to reopen
babelmed - 10/02/2014
A church in the 1,700-year-old St. Bartholomew Monastery in Turkey's eastern city Van will be restored and opened to tourists Turkish news agency AA reports.
The provincial culture and tourism directorate said that the restoration project for the church was sent to the Ministry of Culture.
The church had been closed for years as it is located within the compound of an army base. It reopened for religious services in 2013, when the base was relocated.
"We are planning to restore the church and open it to tourists by the end of this year," said Muzaffer Aktug, Culture and Tourism Director of the Van province.
St. Bartholomew's Church was built on the site of the martyrdom of the Apostle Bartholomew, who is reputed to have brought Christianity to Armenia in the first century.
The area around Van is noted for its numerous Armenian churches and Iron Age Urartu ruins.