The offices of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo have been destroyed by a petrol bomb, a day after it named the Prophet Mohammed as its “editor-in-chief” for this week’s issue.
The fiercely anti-clerical magazine said the move, which included renaming the publication “Sharia Hebdo”, was intended to “celebrate” the victory of Islamist party Ennhada in Tunisia’s election.
Charlie Hedbo’s editor-in-chief, known as Charb, told France Info radio: “We no longer have a newspaper. All our equipment has been destroyed or has melted.”
No injuries have been reported.
A single Molotov cocktail was thrown at the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris’s 20th arrondissement at around 1am. The ensuing fire was rapidly put out, but a large amount of material in the office was destroyed, police said.
“We cannot, today, put together a paper,” said Charb. “But we will do everything possible to do one next week. Whatever happens, we’ll do it. There is no question of giving in,” he said, adding that the magazine is filing a legal complaint against persons unkown. […]
According to Europe 1 radio, police are searching for two suspects seen near the scene.
Charlie Hebdo’s website has also been hacked with a message in English and Turkish cursing the magazine.
The message said: “You keep abusing Islam’s almighty Prophet with disgusting and disgraceful cartoons using excuses of freedom of speech.
“Be God’s curse upon you!”
Editor Charb said the attackers could not even have read the offending magazine.
“The arsonists haven’t read this paper, nobody knows what’s in the paper except those who buy it this morning. People are reacting violently to a paper without knowing anything of its contents, that’s what’s most abhorrent and stupid,” he told BFM TV.
The publication, historically famous for pillorying Catholic clericalism, was criticised by Muslims in 2007 after reprinting the Danish cartoons of the prophet Mohammad that caused outrage around the Islamic world.
Charb said the magazine had received “quite a few letters of protest, threats, insults” on Twitter and Facebook before the attack, but not as many as in 2007.
It is the policy of Religion News Blog to publish news article about crimes committed in the name of Islam under the topic, ‘Hate Groups.’
We call on civilized countries to prosecute to the fullest extend of the law those who, in the name of Islam, try to suppress the freedom of others — including the right to free speech.
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