Exactly 177 years… It will be brought to tourism

Halfeti, which was included in the “Calm City” network by the Cittaslow International Coordination Committee in 2013 and called the “hidden paradise” of the region with its historical stone houses and natural beauties, hosts local and foreign tourists.

After the Birecik Dam was put into service in 2002, the 177-year-old Ulu Mosque, 40 centimeters of which was under water, attracts the attention of tourists.

The project carried out by the Municipality of Halfeti for the purpose of opening the mosque, which was built with specially crafted cut stone, with a rectangular plan and three halls, to worship and tourism, has come to an end.

If the project is realized, the historical mosque will be brought into tourism and worship by raising its base.

Halfeti Mayor Şeref Albayrak told Anadolu Agency that the district is one of the important tourism centers of Şanlıurfa and the Southeastern Anatolia Region.

Stating that there has not been any activity in tourism due to the Kovid-19 epidemic in the last 2 years, but they expect to reach the target number by the end of the year with the normalization in 2021, Albayrak said:

“Our Halfeti district is an important tourism region due to its history, nature and being a quiet city. The Great Mosque in our district is one of the important Ottoman monuments standing. It was built in 1844 and some of it was submerged with the construction of the Birecik Dam in 2002. The construction project of this mosque is in the Directorate of Surveying. If the Ministry of Culture and Tourism takes it into its investment program, I hope the Great Mosque will be opened to worship and tourism again.

Recently, we hosted our President of Religious Affairs in our district. Since some of the mosque is submerged in water, it needs to be protected. If this project is implemented, the 177-year-old Ottoman artifact will be saved. It is up to us to protect this structure that has survived to this day. We will meet with both our Ministry of Culture and Tourism and the Presidency of Religious Affairs, and hopefully we will open it to worship again as in the old days. In this way, tourists will encounter a beautiful Ottoman artifact. Our mosque will look like a mosque combined with water, just like the Ortaköy Mosque in Beşiktaş. In the project, every stone of the mosque will be removed and it will be rebuilt by lifting 4 meters. It is a really difficult project and its cost will reach 10 million, but it will make us happy that it will be opened.”

Mehmet Kamil Türkmen, Chairman of the Tourism Committee of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said that the reopening of the historical mosque will add value to tourism.

Noting that the mosque will have a positive impact on tourism, Türkmen said, “We want the project to be realized immediately and we welcome it. It is very important that the project reaches the tender stage. We believe it will add value to a region where 1 million tourists come.” he said.

Source: STAR.COM.TR by www.star.com.tr.

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