Violence erupts around the world in reaction to Charlie Hebdo cover
The controversial Charlie Hebdo issue depicting the Islamic prophet on the cover has sold out in New York after a limited release. Meanwhile, violence has erupted around the world as protesters reacted with uproar.
People want to own the Charlie Hebdo issue that has ignited furies worldwide
The Daily News reported that bookshops in New York made a few hundred copies of the controversial Charlie Hebdo issue available to the public. Quickly, the copies were purchased as French expatriates and supporters of free speech expressed high demand for the coveted item. Inside the French Embassy's cultural services building, 100 copies of the magazine were sold within two hours of release at $6 – one per person. One customer, Eddy Gollum, expressed his excitement.
"It's symbolic, I think," said Gollum, according to The Daily News. "I wanted a copy to support them and support free speech. I'm going to frame it, and put it in my office."
Other buyers showed their support as well, but declined to give their names for fear of retaliation – especially in light of the violent reaction that has been witnessed around the world.
Furious protesters set fires and destroyed buildings in anger
CNN reported on the sweeping violence and chaos that has resulted from the satirical magazine cover. In Niger, 10 people were killed and churches and homes were destroyed. According to a police report, 173 people were injured and over 3 dozen churches were set on fire.
"[Forty five churches were] set ablaze in the capital [Niamey] alone," said the police report, reported the news source. "Christian school and orphanage were also set alight."
In a video shot in Niamey, protesters were shown waving Qurans and tearing apart Bibles and throwing them on the ground. A bar owned by people from France was also seen burning in the footage. Similarly, in Pakistan a photographer was shot dead. In Karachi, Police resorted to using tear gas and water cannons to disperse protests outside the French consulate. Approximately 200 protesters were involved in the violence after religious figures in the country called on supporters to condemn the cartoon after prayers were concluded, reported CNN.
The news source also called attention to events in Jordan, where the Muslim Brotherhood organized 2,000 protesters who then clashed with police as they moved toward the French Embassy, reported USA Today. Gaza witnessed similar events.
"Some 200 radical Islamists tried to storm the French cultural centre in Gaza City on Monday, shouting slogans threatening the lives of staff over Charlie Hebdo cartoons," reported AFP, according to CNN. "Leave Gaza, you French, or we will slaughter you by cutting your throats."
Customers can still get a Charlie Hebdo copy, but do they really want it?
CBS News reported that for customers who were unable to get a copy out of the three hundred magazines that made in to the United States, the satirical French magazine recently launched a free app for Windows, Android and iOS that allows users to purchase the most recent issue for under $4. The app description urges readers to purchase a copy in support of the magazine and express gratitude to people have stood with Charlie Hebdo ever since their Paris offices were attacked by masked gunmen that killed 12 people.
It is curious to wonder, however, if continuing to spread the controversial issue amongst consumers is a good idea. Given the amount of violence and unrest that has resulted from its publication, perhaps the satirical cover should be put to rest. Supporting free speech will always be a noble pursuit, but in this case it seems that it is also resulting in misery and death.