EKR residents pool efforts to restore unique wooden mosque

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In Beskaragai district of East Kazakhstan region, enthusiasts are restoring on their own a unique wooden Akkol mosque built in 1907, saving it from destruction, correspondent reports.

“The mosque was added to the list of historical monuments more than 10 years ago, but it never came to restoration. All the beams rotted, the minaret tilted. If people hadn't started repairs now, the minaret would have fallen. Many people responded to the activists’ call to restore the mosque. Whoever has the opportunity help with money, I heard that money was sent from Germany, one woman transferred her pension for a month. On Saturday and Sunday, 30 to 60 people gather and work from morning to night, "said Gabdulhak Akhunzhanov- a member of Kazakhstan People’s Assembly, head of the association “Priirtysh Union of Tatars and Bashkirs “Khak”.

As Semey citizen noted, the East Kazakhstan Regional Institute for Historical and Cultural Heritage Protection plan to conduct a historical and cultural examination of the mosque in order to allocate budget funds for its restoration, determine the condition of the monument, the degree of wear and tear, and most importantly - the amount of work required, and after that propose the object for the renovation plan for 2022.

The wooden mosque in Siberian-Tatar style was built in 1907 by a local resident Sultan Fazylbekov. The religious building is unique in that it was erected without a single nail. Divine services were held in it for 10 years, and since 1918 it housed a club, then a school, a library.

In 2018, the head of the Irtysh Union of Tatars and Bashkirs "Khak" Gabdulhak Akhunzhanov, as well as an activist, businessman Eldar Baykanov, addressed a request to East Kazakhstan region’s administration to reconstruct the monument of Muslim wooden architecture. After the inspection of the building by representatives of the protection of historical and cultural heritage, it was decided to restore the mosque within the Cultural Heritage program.

Galina Vologodskaya
15:49, 16 July 2021

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