To develop tourism in Van, Turkish citizens are demanding that the authorities restore the Armenian church of St. George on the island of Lim.
The people of Van are convinced that Lim is an important place in terms of religious tourism, stressing the need for the early restoration of the surviving church buildings.
According to the source, 3 of the 4 largest islands in Lake Van, including Lim Island, have been included in a reserve, following a decision taken by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan last year.
According to a legend, Gregory the Illuminator established the Lim desert in the 4th century. By the early 14th century, the churches of St. Astvatsatsin, St. Karapet, and St. George (the largest one) had been located on the island.
The correspondent of the Dogan agency writes that the construction of the St. George Church, which began in the 11th century, was completed in 1305. In 1766, a chapel was added to the church. By 1918, the abandoned monastery complex had been destroyed by treasure hunters.
According to a Turkish source, residents of the Yailikaya area in front of Lim Island emphasize the need for the restoration of the buildings of the monastery complex that have survived to this day and the development of religious tourism on Lim Island.
Bilal Firat, a member of the Yailikaya Council of Elders, in an interview with the agency stressed the importance of the Lim Armenian Church.
Ahmet Chiclan, a local, asked the Turkish authorities to restore the facilities on the island of Lim in order to develop tourism in the region.