UP to three million copies of Charlie Hebdo magazine are set to be printed this week in the wake of the terrorist attack that left nine of its staff members dead.
The magazine’s normal print run of 60,000 copies will be dramatically increased as international demand for the controversial publication rises in the attack’s aftermath. A spokesperson for MPL – the company that distributes Charlie Hebdo – said that an initial batch of one million copies will be available on Wednesday and Thursday of this week, and a further two million copies may be printed depending on demand.
“We have requests for 300,000 copies throughout the world, and demand keeps rising by the hour,” said the spokesperson. “The million will go. As of Thursday, the decision will probably be taken to print extra copies… So we’ll have one million, plus two if necessary.” He added that the magazine normally has just 4,000 international clients.
The magazine’s first cover since last week’s tragic attacks that rocked France and the world will feature a cartoon of the Prophet Muhammed with a tear rolling down his face and holding a ‘Je suis Charlie’ sign, accompanied by text declaring ‘all is forgiven.’
The cartoonist responsible for the image, Renald ‘Luz’ Luzier, escaped the massacre at his workplace last week because he overslept by half an hour.
Work on the latest issue of Charlie Hebdo is being carried out under heavy guard at the Liberation newspaper offices in Paris, and this week’s publication is to be translated into 16 languages.
Brothers Cherif and Said Kouachi burst into the Charlie Hebdo offices last week and coldly gunned down 12 people in revenge for the magazine publishing cartoons of the Prophet Muhammed. They also killed a police officer in the street. A second terrorist attack saw a policewoman shot dead and four hostages at a Jewish supermarket killed by another militant with ties to the Kouachi brothers.