Weekly prints more cartoon issues

Feb. 9, 2006 at 6:58 AM

PARIS, Feb. 9 (UPI) -- French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo tripled its print run after becoming the latest European media outlet to reprint the controversial Mohammed cartoons.

The first run of 160,000 copies sold out Wednesday, just hours after its release.

The weekly now expects to sell a further 400,000 copies.

So far, more than a dozen European newspapers have reprinted the cartoons which first surfaced in a Danish newspaper last September.

The images have inflamed the Islamic world, setting off angry demonstrations and attacks on several Nordic embassies.

European newspapers have defended their decision to reprint the caricatures in the name of free speech.

That argument was echoed by Charlie Hebdo, which also printed new cartoons poking fun at Judaism and Christianity.

Earlier this week, French Islamic groups unsuccessfully sought a court injunction against the weekly.

And Wednesday, French President Jacques Chirac called Charlie Hebdo's decision to reprint the images a "profound provocation."

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