Jordan’s King Abdullah II has characterised as “irresponsible and reckless” this week’s latest issue of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, saying its illustration of the Prophet Mohammed is an insult.
On January 7, Islamist gunmen assaulted the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo, killing 12 people in what they said was revenge for previous insults to the Muslim prophet.
In its first edition since then, published Wednesday, the magazine once again featured Mohammed on its cover.
It depicted him with a tear in his eye, under the headline “All is forgiven”.
He holds a sign reading “Je suis Charlie” (I am Charlie), the slogan that has become a global rallying cry for those expressing sympathy for the victims and support for freedom of speech.
A statement from Jordan’s royal palace said “continuation of publishing the cartoon is an insult to the feelings of Muslims everywhere”.
It was an “irresponsible, reckless and thoughtless act,” as one of the fundamental principles of freedom of expression was “respect for religions instead of deliberate insults”.
The king, believed to be a descendant of Mohammed, added that, at times like these, “there is a need for wisdom, dialogue and openendedness… and of working in a constructive manner to boost the values of respect, compassion and common values.”
On Sunday, millions rallied in support of free speech, including in a massive march in Paris attended by French President Francois Hollande and many other world leaders, including King Abdullah.