Senior Military Aide to the Iranian Supreme Leader Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi condemned the French weekly, Charlie Hebdo, for publishing a blasphemous cartoon of Islam’s Prophet Mohammad (PBUH), and said such moves are masterminded by the West and Zionists.
“Insulting the sanctities of Islam is a movement engineered by the Zionists and the West and this can be seen in the French government’s non-gratis aid (to Israel) and the presence of the Zionist regime’s prime minister in France,” Rahim Safavi said, addressing a forum in Tehran on Monday.
He said Islam is gaining a new global momentum and power in the 21st century, and it is now the time for the Muslim world to establish a major power bloc in the world, adding that is why a French magazine has insulted Islam so shamelessly.
His remarks came after the French satirical magazine once again released a sacrilegious cartoon of Islam’s Prophet Mohammad (PBUH) on Wednesday, only a week after gunmen murdered eight journalists and four others at its offices in Paris.
The move has hurt the sentiments of over a billion Muslims throughout the world and caused angry protests in many world states.
The Iranian foreign ministry on Wednesday deplored the publication of the blasphemous Cartoon, describing it as a “provocative” and “insulting” move.
“We condemn provocative moves and in our view, the weekly’s action is insulting and we condemn it completely since it will provoke and hurt Muslims’ feelings across the world and will create a sequence of extremism in the world,” Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Marziyeh Afkham said in Tehran on Wednesday.
She stressed that respecting the beliefs, values and sanctities of different religions was a globally accepted principle and European statesmen are expected to heed such norms.
Afkham underscored that it was not enough for the western governments to admit to their wrong policies, and they needed to adopt correct decisions which serve the interests of the followers of all religions and nations.
Earlier this month, the ISIL terrorist group attacked the weekly after it released a cartoon of ISIL leader Abu Bakr Al-Baqdadi. At least 12 people were killed when masked gunmen stormed the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo and opened fire.
Iranian officials condemned the attack, but warned that the incident should not be used as a pretext for accusing Islam or pressuring the Muslim community in the West, reminding that ISIL is not an Islamic group.
The same day, Afkham condemned the attack, and said any act of terrorism against innocent people is opposed to Islamic teachings.