Published January 03, 2013
A satirical magazine in France once firebombed for its portrayal of radical Muslims has published a 65-page cartoon biography of the Prophet Mohammed.
Charlie Hebdo, whose offices were attacked last November just hours before its "Charia Hebdo" edition hit the stands, says its latest publication is "halal" and describes it as an attempt to teach non-Muslims about the prophet's life, the Financial Times reports.
"We have put into pictures the life of Mohammed as it is recounted by Muslim chroniclers. Without added humor," editor Stephane Charbonnier writes on the magazine's back page. "If the form seems to some blasphemous, the foundation is perfectly halal. Up to you to decide."
"The Life of Mohammed" cover depicts a yellow cartoon character leading a camel through a desert. The book also reportedly includes drawings of naked men wearing turbans and depictions of naked women.
AFP reports the book also shows a young Mohammed taking off his clothes to join other naked children.
"Before having a laugh about a character, it's better to know him. As much as we know about the life of Jesus, we know nothing about Mohammed," Charbonnier told AFP.
The magazine quickly drew criticism across social media.
"Turning the prophet of Islam into a cartoon character is itself wrong," a senior political adviser to Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip said in a Twitter message. "No matter what Charlie Hebdo people say, this is a provocation. My advice to Muslims: ignore it. Don't give them what they want."
Charbonnier reportedly lives under police protection and has received numerous death threats.