Bilal Erdoğan, son of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, called in a January 1, 2024 address that was posted on Haber House on YouTube for a boycott of Israel. He said that the boycott of Israel would not end with a ceasefire. Erdoğan stated that his father “breaking the fetters” of Hagia Sophia by converting it back into a mosque was the first step towards freedom for Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque. Hagia Sophia was a built as a church, converted into a mosque and then into a museum. In July 2020, it was converted back into an operational mosque. Bilal Erdoğan is a businessman, he is a graduate of Indiania University Bloomington and Harvard University.
Bilal Erdoğan: "On October 7, the Nazism of Israel began one of the bloodiest massacres in history.
"We cannot be indifferent, because Jerusalem is our first direction of prayer, and because the Al-Aqsa Mosque is our sacred house of worship. We cannot be indifferent, because from [Caliph] Umar to Saladin, to [Sulan] Selim I, our ancestors who came before us watered this soil with the blood of the martyrs, and enabled the members of the tree [Abrahamic] religions to live in tranquility in these lands.
"We know that those who are causing the genocide in Palestine are the same as the killers of our martyrs. We know that those who are creating artificial agendas and trying to divide us, who are trying to dilute the Palestinian cause, are the agents of influence of America and Israel. We know that breaking the fetters of Hagia Sophia under the leadership of our president was the first step towards freedom for Jerusalem and Al-Aqsa.
"We promise that we will continue the boycott. Istanbul, do we promise to continue the boycott? This will not end with a ceasefire. For as long as the Palestinian cause continues, we are going to make room for the boycott in our lives."