Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan told a group of Muslim leaders from Latin America that Muslims discovered America hundreds of years before Christopher Columbus.
And they built a mosque in Cuba.
Muslims discovered the Americas in the 12 century, nearly 300 years before Christopher Columbus made his famous voyage there, according to Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the president of Turkey.
Advertisement - story continues below
His words, delivered in a televised speech, will lend support to a controversial theory that has been debunked repeatedly by historians.
That did not seem to bother the conservative Turkish president during a summit in Istanbul of Muslim leaders from Latin America.
“Contacts between Latin America and Islam date back to the 12th century. Muslims discovered America in 1178, not Christopher Columbus,” he said.
Mr Erdogan went on to say that Columbus descibed the existence of a mosque on a hill by the Cuban site and that Ankara was prepared to fund a new place of worship for Muslims there.