27-01-2023 03:25 AM Jerusalem Timing

Muslim Scholars, Iran Warn Charlie Hebdo New Cover Could Stir Extremism

Muslim Scholars, Iran Warn Charlie Hebdo New Cover Could Stir Extremism

Muslim world denounced the publication of a new cartoon of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) by the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, warning that such move could stir hatred and fan flame of vicious extremism.

Muslim world denounced the publication of a new cartoon of the Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) by the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, warning that such move could stir hatred and fan flame of vicious extremism.

A leading association of Muslim academics has criticized the new cover, saying it would "stir up hatred".

"It is neither reasonable, nor logical, nor wise to publish drawings and films offensive or attacking the prophet of Islam," the International Union of Muslim Scholars, based in Qatar and headed by preacher Yusuf al-Qaradawi, said in a lengthy statement.

This week's edition of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo shows a cartoon depicting the holy Prophet holding a "Je suis Charlie" sign.
Above the cartoon are the words "All is forgiven".Charlie Hebdo magazine

Publication of the drawing would give further "credibility" to the idea that "the West is against Islam".

It added that the images would further "stir up hatred, extremism and tension".

The statement, published late on Tuesday, continued: "If we agree that (those who committed the attacks) are a minority that do not represent Islam or Muslims, then how can we respond with actions that are not directed against them, but against the prophet worshipped by a billion-and-a-half Muslims?"

Meanwhile, Iran condemned the move, with Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif urged "respect for each other's values".

"We believe that sanctities need to be respected and unless we learn to respect one another it will be very difficult in a world of different views and different cultures and civilizations," Zarif told reporters before meeting with US top diplomat John Kerry on Wednesday.

"We won't be able to engage in a serious dialogue if we start disrespecting each other's values and sanctities," Zarif told reporters.

"And I think we would have a much safer, much more prudent world if we were to engage in serious dialogue, serious debate about our differences," he added.

"Then we will find out that what binds us together is far greater than that what divides us."

The Iranian minister added that the world was "now faced with very serious problems of extremism not only in the Middle East but unfortunately in Europe.

Earlier on Wednesday, foreign ministry spokeswoman Marzieh Afkham said the magazine cover "provokes the emotions of Muslims and hurts their feelings around the world, and could fan the flame of a vicious circle of extremism.”

Iran denounced the shooting the day it occurred at the Charlie Hebdo magazine and Afkham said Wednesday that such attacks "have no closeness or similarity to Islam" and are "in complete contradiction to Islamic teaching".

However she indicated that the new cartoon was "abuse of freedom of speech, which is common in the West these days."

Such publication "is not acceptable" and such "abuse should be prevented".
"Respecting the beliefs and values of followers of divine religions is an acceptable principle," she added.