NEWS

Charlie Hebdo Has Controversial History Of Offending Radical Islam

01/07/2015 08:11 EST | Updated 03/09/2015 05:59 EDT

The French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo has a controversial history in its treatment of radical Islam, including the firebombing of its office and a lawsuit against it alleging blasphemy.

The newspaper's website was attacked by hackers in 2011, after it published one of many cartoons lampooning radical Muslims in general and the Prophet Muhammad in particular.

The firebombing occurred at its Paris office on Nov. 2, 2011, after the magazine "invited" the Prophet Muhammad as its guest editor. No injuries were reported.

In February 2014, the Paris-based weekly was accused of blasphemy for a cover that Muslims called offensive, the International Business Times reported.

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The League of Judicial Defence of Muslims (LDJM) brought the case before the criminal court in Alsace-Moselle, a region that retains part of the old German legal code, including the crime of blasphemy, the Times reported. Blasphemy isn't a crime in the rest of France.

Alsace-Moselle's blasphemy law, however, covers only Catholicism, Protestantism and Judaism. It makes no mention of Islam.

"We know in advance that the trial will not go through because Islam is not in the code," editor Stéphane Charbonnier was quoted as saying at the time.

Charlie Hebdo's history of attacks on radical Islam is an extension of the work of the Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten — the Morning Jutland Post — the Danish newspaper that published cartoons lampooning Muhammad in 2005 and 2006, setting off protests around the world and several plots against the paper and its employees.

In Canada, Ezra Levant's Western Standard and the Jewish Free Press republished some of the Danish cartoons. They were accused of fomenting hatred by the Islamic Supreme Council of Canada.

Levant was the subject of a couple of complaints to the Alberta Human Rights Commission. One was withdrawn while the other was dismissed nearly a decade ago..

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