The two buildings look across the crowded square at each other. Like Istanbul itself, they both divide and join the citizens and their history. Represented within these two great landmarks is the core of the city’s heritage. If the buildings were people, historical figures even, they would be eyeing each other off with an acceptance of contemporary diplomacy but with memories of a violent past. This is the beauty today of the Sultan Ahmed Mosque (aka Blue Mosque) and Hagia Sophia.

Turkey and Istanbul in particular have always been a melting pot of culture and religion. As the bridge between Europe and Asia, it has been the battleground for physical and ideological warfare over the centuries. But a constant struggle is unsustainable. Eventually one world became another and the past became a story rather than a daily reality.

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