Turkey's Cumhuriyet newspaper says two of its journalists have been charged with "openly insulting the people's religious values" for featuring French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo's cover with the image of the Prophet Muhammad in their columns.

The pro-secular newspaper said Thursday that columnists Ceyda Karan and Hikmet Cetinkaya could be sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison if convicted.

Cumhuriyet had printed a selection of cartoons and articles in a show of solidarity with Charlie Hebdo following the deadly attack on its offices on Jan. 7.

The four-page pullout did not feature the controversial cover, but the two journalists had printed images of the cover as their column headers.

Prosecutors launched an investigation in January after Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said his government would not allow "insults to our Prophet."