Charlie Hebdo: France reacts to new edition – 'They thought they had killed Charlie. But they have risen from the grave'

New issue attracts praise from unlikely sources

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The Independent Online

The uncompromising attitude of Charlie Hebdo was acclaimed by the French press today – even by the newspaper La Croix, voice of a Catholic church often lampooned by the magazine.

Dominique Quinio, the newspaper’s editor said that the decision to put a cartoon of the Prophet Mohamed on the front page was the correct one.

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"It would have been impossible for the team of survivors to yield to intimidation,"  she wrote. "That would have been to betray their (dead) comrades."

The release on Tuesday of the front page showing Mohamed holding a "Je suis Charlie" placard was condemned by Islamic organisations outside France. The main umbrella organisation for Muslims in France took a resigned view and simply appealed for "calm".

Laurent Joffrin, the editor of the centre-left newspaper, Liberation (which has given shelter to the Charlie Hebdo survivors) said that the Mohamed front page should be seen a gesture towards reconciliation, not provocation.

He pointed out that the caption above the cartoon read "all is forgiven" and the Prophet was shown shedding a tear. "Some people expected a provocative front page. Others feared that Charie Hebdo woud retreat," Mr Joffrin said. "Instead, we have a model of politoical intelligence. Mohamed is there but presented in a positive way, with a hint of tenderness."

In the regional newspaper, L'Alsace, Raymond Couraud, said: "They thought they had killed Charlie. But they have risen from the grave."

Jean-Claude Souléry in La Dépêche du Mid said: "Whether you love this magazine or detest it, we must all rejoice to find it still on the news stands."

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