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OIC Urges France to Act Against Muhammad Cartoon Magazine

The French government should take “appropriate” action against a magazine that’s publishing new caricatures of the Prophet Muhammad, according to the secretary general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.

Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu said the publication, which is part of a series on the life of Islam’s last prophet by French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, “should abide by the provisions –- particularly those in the European Union context –- on incitement to hatred and violence,” according to a statement dated yesterday. The Jeddah-based OIC is an inter-governmental organization with 57 member states, according to its website.

The first part of the series, “The Life of Muhammad: The Beginnings of a Prophet,” was published yesterday. The magazine’s description says “if the form appears blasphemous to some, the content is perfectly halal,” or permissible. Visual representations of the prophet are considered blasphemy by most Muslims.

The OIC called on Muslims around the world to exercise restraint. Charlie Hebdo’s offices were firebombed in November 2011 after the magazine published a special edition featuring the Prophet Muhammad as a “guest editor,” Agence France-Presse reported at the time, citing an unidentified police official. Charlie Hebdo also published cartoons mocking the prophet in September, fueling protests across the Muslim world.

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