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New Charlie Hebdo cover insults Mohammed: Jordan king

King adds his voice to those of Egyptian, Turkish and Moroccan officials who have criticised, banned latest edition
King Abdullah II attended Sunday's massive march in Paris (AFP)

Jordan's King Abdullah II has characterised as "irresponsible and reckless" this week's issue of French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, saying its illustration of the Prophet Mohammed is an insult.

The first edition of the magazine since gunmen killed 12 people in what they said was a revenge killing for insulting Prophet Mohammed featured the prophet once again.

Depicted 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.

The king is the latest leader to speak out against the magazine cover. On Wednesday, Turkish officials banned the image on the front cover. After a magazine sidestepped the ban by publishing it on an inside cover, a court has sought to block on websites featuring the cover. 

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi on Tuesday gave officials the power to ban any foreign publication deemed offensive to religion, a move echoed on Wednesday in Morocco where the government refused to offer distribution licenses to foreign newspapers reprinting cartoons mocking the prophet. 

The magazine has also been banned in Senegal.

A statement from Jordan's royal palace on Thursday 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.

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