Charlie Hebdo attack: Rush to buy new “survivors” issue

Long queues have formed at newsstands in France for the latest edition of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Three million copies are being printed – a week after Islamist gunmen murdered eight journalists at the magazine and four other people in Paris.

The cover shows a cartoon depicting the Prophet Muhammad weeping while holding a sign saying “Je suis Charlie” (“I am Charlie”).

It is believed earlier cartoons of the Prophet prompted the attack.

The slogan “Je suis Charlie” has been widely used following the shootings.

In a separate attack in Paris two days later, four Jewish men died after an Islamist gunmen took hostages at a kosher shop in the French capital. A police woman was shot dead in a third shooting believed to have been carried out by the same attacker.

Referring to last week’s shocking events, French Prime Minister Manuel Valls said his country was at war with extremism and terrorism – but not with Muslims.

He was speaking on Tuesday after funeral ceremonies were held for seven of the victims in France and Israel.

France has deployed 10,000 troops at various sites across the country – including synagogues, mosques and airports – in response to the attacks.

Wednesday’s edition of Charlie Hebdo has an unprecedented print run of three million copies. Normally only 60,000 are printed each week.

Demand for what is being called the “survivor’s issue” of the magazine is high, correspondents say, especially as the proceeds will go to the victims’ families.

Kiosk owners told French media they had received large numbers of reservation requests, while at one shop in Paris all copies were reportedly sold out within 30 minutes.

The issue will be available in six languages – including English, Arabic and Turkish – some in print and some online.

Editor-in-chief Gerard Biard told reporters: “We are happy to have done it and happy to have been able to do it, to have achieved it. It was tough. The front page… was complicated to put together, because it had to express something new, it had to say something relating to the event that we had to deal with.”

The front cover of the edition had been widely published in advance by French media.

Outside France, the Washington Post, Germany’s Frankfurter Allgemeine, Corriere della Sera in Italy and the UK’s Guardian are among publications to show the cartoon.

Turkish newspaper Cumhuriyet has published a section of the magazine, including a small image of the cover in one of its columns.

Very few outlets in the Middle East and North Africa have shown the image.

Charlie Hebdo’s decision to publish another cartoon of the Prophet has already generated threats from militant Islamist websites and criticism from the Islamic world, the BBC’s Chris Morris in Paris reports.

Meanwhile, controversial French comedian Dieudonne M’bala M’bala was arrested on Wednesday for “defending terrorism”.

Police opened an investigation into the comic on Monday, after he wrote on a Facebook post “I feel like Charlie Coulibaly” – merging Charlie Hebdo with the name of supermarket gunman Amedy Coulibaly.

Suspect on the run

The three days of violence in Paris began after brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi attacked the magazine’s office. They shouted “We have avenged the Prophet Muhammad” after the shootings.

The brothers were later killed by French security services after a stand-off in a town north of Paris.

Separately, Coulibaly – whom investigators have linked to the brothers – killed the four men at the kosher supermarket on Friday, apparently before police stormed the building. Coulibaly is also believed to have shot dead the policewoman the day before.

His partner Hayat Boumeddiene is now thought to be in Syria. She has been identified as a suspect by French police, although she left France before the attacks.