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Charlie Hebdo to publish 'responsible' and 'irresponsible' versions after Mohammed cartoons row

Reuters/Jacky Naegelen

The French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, which caused a furore by publishing cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed last week, announced on Monday that it plans to publish two separate issues on Wednesday.

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According to Charlie Hebdo’s publisher, Stéphane Charbonnier, known as Charb, one will feature “responsible” content while the other will be “irresponsible”.

Several politicians, including Green Euro-MP Daniel Cohn-Bendit, called the paper irresponsible for publishing the cartoons at a time when violent demonstrations against the Innocence of Muslim film had cost about 30 lives.

Former housing minister Christine Boutin, who leads the small Christian Democrat party, said that she would sue the paper for putting people’s lives in danger.

The two issues will cost the same and the same authors will contribute to it but will be “100 per cent different”, according to Charbonnier.

One will be “responsible as the Boutins and Cohn-Bendits want it to be”, the other will be “irresponsible … a normal Charlie Hebdo”, he said.

Last week's issue of the paper sold out within hours, leading to a second print-run on Friday, but Innocence of Muslims has continued to be the focus of protests around the world, while a French government ban on demonstrations succeeded in preventing them last Saturday.

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