Bagrat Temple - the temple, built in Kutaisi, in the reign of Bagrat III as the main palace of the kingdom, and consecrated in honor of the Assumption in 1003.
Majestic in size and proportions of the temple has become a fundamentally new word in the history of the Transcaucasian architecture was richly decorated with carvings and mosaics, and played a crucial role in the medieval history of Georgia. In particular, here it was crowned David IV builder.
During the attack of the Turks in 1691 gunpowder explosion destroyed the roof and dome of the cathedral, is not subsequently reversed.
In 1994, the temple was declared a UNESCO Bagrat among the World Heritage sites in 2001 transferred to the Georgian Orthodox Church, which is periodically held in the ruins of worship.
After re-election to a second term as president, Mikhail Saakashvili at the inauguration ceremony promised to recreate the temple "in its original form." In response to the criticism from critics and restorers president said: "On this issue, I will not change my opinion. Bagrati must be restored and must be brought back to Georgia in all its glory. "
In July 2010, UNESCO demanded cessation of the construction in the territory of the monument and made it to the World Heritage List, endangered, but despite this the reconstruction of the temple continued. It was planned that the restoration of the cathedral will be completed in autumn 2012. June 17th, 2012 the Catholicos-Patriarch of Georgia Ilia II called a halt to the ongoing work and to agree on all the details of recovery specialists from UNESCO.
August 17, 2012 on the dome of the temple of Bagrat installed six-foot bronze cross weighing 300 kg. The cross is made on the design of architect Vano Gremelashvili. The cross will be visible from all points of Kutaisi. Attending the ceremony, President Saakashvili said that the restoration of the temple was a dream of the Georgian people, and the temple itself is a symbol of united Georgia. However, he said that the cathedral was destroyed by Russian artillery, though in reality it was the work of only Turks and no Russian artillery to this totally involved.