France Shuts Down Embassies over Mohammed CaricaturesWorld | September 19, 2012, Wednesday // 14:42| views
France has decided to shut down starting Friday its embassies in 20 Muslim countries over security concerns after the Charlie Hebdo newspaper published caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed.
Wednesday the humor weekly came out with a cover story satirizing the recent turn of events, in which riots broke out in a number of Islamic countries provoked by the "Innocence of Muslims" film, allegedly insulting to the Prophet.
The cover of Charlie Hebdo shows a Mohammed-like figure pushed in a wheelchair by an Orthodox Jew under the inscription "Intouchables 2", with both saying "One ought not mock us!"
The Wednesday, September 19 issue of the weekly has quickly sold out.
France has officially announced it will up security measures in all its diplomatic missions across the world.
The editorial office of Charlie Hebdo is under heavy police protection, with authorities in Paris denying permission of a protest organized by Muslims.
Last year the newspaper's office was bombed, after it published a string of caricatures satirizing certain tenets of Islam, including a material allegedly edited by the Prophet himself.
At the same time, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has announced that her country is taking up "aggressive measures" to protect its diplomatic missions.
The riots started Tuesday last week in Libya, where rioting in Benghazi claimed the lives of the US ambassador to Libya and three other American officials.
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