Pakistan foreign office has strongly condemned the French magazine Charlie Hebdo’s decision to republish the blasphemous caricature.
“Pakistan condemns in the strongest terms the decision by the French magazine, Charlie Hebdo, to re-publish deeply offensive caricature of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH),” the Foreign Office said in a statement.
“Such a deliberate act to offend the sentiments of billions of Muslims cannot be justified as an exercise in press freedom or freedom of expression. Such actions undermine the global aspirations for peaceful co-existence as well as social and inter-faith harmony,” the statement said.
Such a deliberate act to offend the sentiments of billions of Muslims cannot be justified as an exercise in press freedom or freedom of expression. Such actions undermine the global aspirations for peaceful co-existence as well as social and inter-faith harmony. 2/2
— Spokesperson 🇵🇰 MoFA (@ForeignOfficePk) September 1, 2020
It should be noted that ‘Charlie Hebdo’ had announced to republish the blasphemous caricature.
According to foreign news agencies, the announcement was made by the French magazine a day before the start of the terror trial against the 14 suspects who provided weapons and transport facilities to the attackers in its Paris office in 2015.
The magazine said it was encouraged by those who attacked its editorial staff to carry out the heinous act.
“These are part of history and history cannot be rewritten or erased,” the magazine wrote in its editorial this week, publishing blasphemous sketches.
On January 7, 2015, Charlie Hebdo’s office was attacked by two brothers in which 12 people, including the magazine’s editor and five cartoonists, were killed.
Initial reports said the attack took place after the magazine’s Twitter account shared a picture of former ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. However, al-Qaeda later claimed responsibility for the attack.
Charlie Hebdo first gained notoriety when they published blasphemous caricature in the Danish daily Jielands-Postan in February 2006, followed by Charlie Hebdo again in 2011.
Protests erupted around the world over the publication of blasphemous sketches of the Prophet of Islam (PBUH) in a French magazine, followed by an attack on the magazine’s office with incendiary substances, but no damage was done.