Turkey has blasted French magazine Charlie Hebdo for spreading ‘cultural racism’

Monitoring Desk

Ankara calls on European countries to fight back against “cultural racism, intellectual barrenness, and uncivilized discourse” as notorious magazine publishes a series of “loathsome” cartoons.

Turkey has blasted controversial French magazine Charlie Hebdo for publishing “loathsome” so-called caricatures purportedly of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, as pressure mounts on France over its anti-Muslim policies. 

“Charlie Hebdo just published a series of so-called cartoons full of despicable images purportedly of our President. We condemn this most disgusting effort by this publication to spread its cultural racism and hatred,” Presidential Communications Director Fahrettin Altun said on Twitter. 

“The so-called caricatures are loathsome and they are devoid of any real sense of human decency. It’s clearly the product of a xenophobic, Islamophobic, and intolerant cultural environment the French leadership seems to want for their country,” Altun said. 

While underscoring Turkey’s position of being opposed to any violence and acts of terrorism against civilians, he said: “We will not remain silent in the face of disgusting attacks on our culture and religion no matter where it comes from. The racist, xenophobic, Islamophobic and anti-Semitic incitements will not be able to provoke us into reciprocating in kind,” he added.  

Altun called on all “sensible” European friends to fight back against “this kind of primitive cultural racism, intellectual barrenness, and uncivilised discourse.”

Turkish presidential aide Ibrahim Kalin said the aim of these “immoral and shameless publications” was to sow seeds of hatred and animosity. 

“Everyone with common sense should condemn and reject this disgusting publishing.”

Fury over Macron’s anti-Muslim policies 

On Tuesday, tens of thousands of protesters marched through the Bangladesh capital in the biggest anti-France rally since President Emmanuel Macron defended cartoons insulting Prophet Mohammad.

In Syria, people burned pictures of France’s leader, tricolour flags were torched in the Libyan capital Tripoli, while French goods have been pulled from supermarket shelves in Qatar, Kuwait and other Gulf states.

Erdogan has called for a boycott of French goods, ramping up a standoff between France and Muslim countries over the Charlie Hebdo’s caricatures targeting Muslims and Islam. 

Erdogan has led the charge against President Emmanuel Macron over his defence of the right to mock religion following the beheading of a French school teacher who had shown his students cartoons insulting Prophet Muhammad in a class on secularism.

Erdogan added his voice to calls in the Muslim world for citizens to spurn French goods.

Outrageous cartoons

The images of Prophet Muhammad were first published years ago by Charlie Hebdo, whose editorial offices were attacked by gunmen in 2015, killing 12 people.

However, Muslims say the Hebdo cartoons were produced with the deliberate intention of mocking their community as a whole. 

The cartoons were seen within the context of the French state’s terse relationship with the Muslim community, with successive French governments introducing laws that have targeted Muslims for practices such as choosing to eat halal food and women wearing hijabs.

Courtesy: TRT world

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