Greek foreign minister attends Christmas liturgy in Istanbul

Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias attended a Christmas liturgy in the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople led by Patriarch Bartholomew on Wednesday, Hürriyet daily reported.

Dendias later had a meeting with Istanbul’s mayor Ekrem İmamoğlu, who defeated Turkey’s ruling Islamist party in local polls this year, EHA news said.

Many arriving from Greece and other countries also joined the liturgy in the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Hürriyet said. 

Christmas liturgies also took place in different parts of Turkey, including the southeastern province of Diyarbakır which hosts Syriac Orthodox St. Mary Church.

Meanwhile, Istanbul’s Greek Orthodox community marked Christmas Day on Tuesday with Kalanda, a Greek Orthodox tradition of singing traditional Greek Christmas carols in Beyoğlu.