Wednesday’s Charlie Hebdo magazine will include cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed,lawyer announces
Posted January 13, 2015on:
Charlie Hebdo magazine will include cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed
This week’s issue of Charlie Hebdo will contain cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed and the front cover will be unveiled tonight, the magazine’s lawyer confirmed today.
The surviving members of the magazine’s staff decided to print images of the holy figure in defiance of Muslim extremists who slaughtered their colleagues on Wednesday last week.
Lawyer Richard Malka said this week’s issue, which is expected to sell 1million copies when it comes out in two days’s time, will ‘of course’ contain images of the Prophet.
Mr Malka told France Info radio: ‘We will not give in. The spirit of ‘Je suis Charlie’ means the right to blaspheme.
‘We will not give in otherwise all this won’t have meant anything. A Je Suis Charlie banner means you have the right to criticise my religion, because it’s not serious.
‘We have never criticised a Jew because he’s a Jew, a Muslim because he’s a Muslim or a Christian because he’s a Christian.
‘But you can say anything you like, the worst horrors – and we do – about Christianity, Judaism and Islam, because behind the nice slogans, that’s the reality of Charlie Hebdo.’
Brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi chose the publication as the target of their attack last week after it repeatedly published cartoons of Mohammed, which some Muslims find deeply offensive.
The magazine once renamed itself ‘Sharia Hebdo’, claimed to be guest edited by the Prophet and carried the cover slogan ‘100 lashes if you don’t die laughing’.
Their offices were burned down after a petrol bomb attack in 2010, believed to be connected to the images, though on that occasion nobody was hurt.
Editor Stephane Charbonnier, who was among the nine magazine staff to be shot dead last week, was also placed on Al Qaeda’s most wanted list last year.
Charlie Hebdo’s remaining members are working on the next eight-page issue from their heavily-guarded temporary headquarters at the Libération newspaper.
On the day after the attacks staff first confirmed there would be a magazine this week, saying it would take submissions from cartoonists around the world.
The issue will be translated into 16 different languages, though the remaining illustrators have admitted it has not been easy pulling the publication together.
Luz, a Charlie cartoonist, said: ‘We’re getting by. We are having less nightmares. We are trying to put a magazine together and find some calm and inspiration, it’s not easy.
‘We are down to a skeleton staff since last Wednesday as you might have noticed but we’ll try our best.’
Mr Charbonnier, an outspoken proponent of the right to free speech, died on Wednesday along with some of France’s most revered cartoonists and magazine contributors.
The dead included Bernard ‘Tignous’ Verlhac, Georges Wolinski, Jean ‘Cabu’ Cabut, Philippe Honore, Bernard Maris, Elsa Cayat, Mustapha Ourrad and Michel Renaud.
According to witness reports, Said and Cherif burst in to the paper’s morning conference, then called out the names of the contributors they were looking for before pulling the trigger.
Since then millions have taken to Twitter, posting messages of support along with the tag Je Suis Charlie – I Am Charlie.
Millions took to the streets of France yesterday in solidarity marches waving banners that bore the slogan, while George and Amal Clooney wore Charlie badges to last night’s Golden Globes.
Today France announced that 10,000 security officers will deployed to protect ‘sensitive sites’ across the country, including Jewish schools and mosques, in the wake of the attacks.
The announcement was made this morning by the Interior Minister after a security briefing.
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