The Mosque–Cathedral of Córdoba was originally built by the Visigoths as the Basilica of Saint Vincent of Lérins. When the Muslims conquered Spain in 711 the Basilica was divided into Muslim and Christian halves: the arrangement that lasted until 784, when the Christian half was purchased by the Emir ‘Abd al-Rahman I, who demolished the entire structure and build the Grand Mosque of Córdoba on the site. When Córdoba returned to Christian rule in 1236 the building was converted into a church and a nave was added in the 16th century. Since the early 2000s Spanish Muslims have lobbied unsuccessfully to be allowed to pray in the cathedral.
In 2006 the Diocese of Córdoba paid €30 to register ownership of the mosque-cathedral. However, Córdoba City Council’s Secretary General, Valeriano Lavela Pérez, has written a report in which he rejects the claim and argues that the registration by the Diocese is of no legal effect: there is a summary here. Continue reading