They were executed for satire on Muslims by jihadists
GN Bureau | January 8, 2015
Charlie Hebdo magazine’s latest cover featured a caricature of controversial French author Michel Houellebecq, who has penned a novel set in a France governed by Muslims. On Wednesday noon (Paris time) its editor Stephane Charbonnier was shot dead along with 11 others in the magazine office during an editorial meeting.
Two masked, black-clad men with assault rifles stormed the magazine offices near Paris' Bastille monument. Shouting "Allahu akbar!" they fired as they called out the names of specific employees.
The publication has been courting controversy for its cartoons, especially on Islam. It was firebombed in 2011 for its depictions of Islam, although it also satirized other religions and political figures. The country has the largest Muslim population in Western Europe, with an estimated 4.7 million living in France.
The magazine top editors were in an editorial meeting and the gunmen headed straight for the paper's editor, Stephane Charbonnier — widely known by his pen name Charb — killing him and his police bodyguard first. The other dead were identified as cartoonists Georges Wolinski and Berbard Verlhac, better known as Tignous, and Jean Cabut, known as Cabu. Also killed was Bernard Maris, an economist who was a contributor to the newspaper.
Eight journalists, two police officers, a maintenance worker and a visitor were killed, said prosecutor Francois Molins. He said 11 people were wounded — four of them seriously.
Two gunmen came in a black car one of them calmly shot a police officer before entering the magazine office. The wounded policeman was later shot in the head at point blank range as he writhed on the ground.
"They knew exactly what they had to do and exactly where to shoot. While one kept watch and checked that the traffic was good for them, the other one delivered the final coup de grace," said a witness.
"Hey! We avenged the Prophet Muhammad! We killed Charlie Hebdo," one of the men shouted in French, according to a video shot from a nearby building.
Killers are French nationals
The two brothers, both French nationals, called Saïd, 34, and Cherif Kouachi, 32, are the prime suspects in the attack.
Cherif was reportedly part of an Iraqi jihadi network dismantled by the police. He was sentenced to three years in prison with 18 months suspended in relation to terror charges in May 2008.
The two brothers are Franco-Algerians who came back from Syria this summer.
Charlie Hebdo was founded in 1969 as Hara-Kiri Hebdo. The founding editors, humorist Georges Bernier and François Cavanna, had their first brush with the establishment in November 1970 for writing about the death of Charles de Gaulle. He had died at home in the village of Colombey-les-Deux-Églises aged 79, a week after a nightclub fire in south-eastern France killed 146 people.
"Tragic Ball at Colombey, one dead" was the magazine's headline. The country's interior minister had acted swiftly and banned Hara-Kiri Hebdo. After that ban it was forced to change the name of the magazine to Charlie Hebdo.
Chief economic advisor Arvind Subramanian’s campaign for some sense in country ratings has finally found some success. Global rating agency Moody`s Investors Service has downgraded China`s long-term local currency and foreign currency issuer ratings to A1 from Aa3 and changed the outlook to stable fr
The low level of farmers` income and year to year fluctuations in it are a major source of agrarian distress. This distress is spreading and getting severe over time impacting almost half of the population of the country that is dependent on farming for livelihood, said a Niti Aayog policy paper.
The civil society has strongly criticized the Narendra Modi government that completes three years in office. Citizens’ Report: Promises and Reality tha
Improving the availability of health workers, particularly at the sub-centre level, has been one of the thrust areas of the national rural health mission (NRHM). Back in 2005, most of the sub-centres in the country were run by a single auxiliary nurse midwife (ANM). ANMs were overbu
Should there be moderation of marks in Class XII board exams?
Public sector undertakings (PSUs) can become more efficient only through discipline, said Anil Swarup, secretary, department of school education and literacy, ministry of human resource development. Speaking at the 2nd India PSU IT Forum organised by Governance Now on Wednesdaty, Swarup laid