World Bulletin/News Desk
Protesters in several Arab cities staged demonstrations on Friday to protest the latest issue of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo, which features cartoons depicting Islam's Prophet Muhammad.
Charlie Hebdo was targeted by militants last week in a shooting rampage that left 12 people dead.
The magazine's first issue after the attack, released on Wednesday, featured a caricature of Prophet Muhammad on the cover.
Hundreds of Palestinians gathered in East Jerusalem at the Al-Aqsa Mosque complex, where they shouted slogans such as "God is great" and "Muhammad is our leader," while Israeli forces remained stationed outside the complex.
"May our lives be sacrificed for Muhammad," protesters chanted while marching through the mosque compound following Friday prayers.
Protesters also carried flags of Palestinian group Hamas and chanted slogans against Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who took part in an "anti-terrorism" rally in Paris on Sunday following a deadly attack on the magazine's headquarters.
Thousands of Jordanian protesters, meanwhile, staged a protest in downtown Amman. The rally was organized by the National Jordanian Committee in Defense of the Prophet, which includes former MPs and Muslim Brotherhood leaders.
"France must reconsider allowing Charlie Hebdo to publish caricatures offending the prophet," ex-MP and protester Ali al-Sanid told The Anadolu Agency.
"Jordanians will continue to show support for the prophet in every way they can," he said.
Scuffles erupted between police and protesters, preventing the latter from marching on the French embassy's headquarters in Amman.
Over a thousand protesters also demonstrated in Sudanese capital Khartoum, with some holding signs saying "Death to Charlie Hebdo" and "We demand an apology from France."
In Khartoum, too, security forces prevented protesters from reaching the French embassy.
In Egypt, meanwhile, hundreds of supporters of ousted Islamist President Mohamed Morsi added slogans in support of the prophet to their weekly Friday demonstrations against Egypt's military-backed government.
In Afghanistan, a group of angry protesters in the capital Kabul, gathered after Friday prayers to demonstrate against the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.
Protesters at the rally organized by the Abu Bakr-e-Sediq Mosque chanted anti-France slogans, burned a French flag and praised the two gunmen who killed 12 people at Charlie Hebdo's offices last week.
“We strongly condemn drawing and publishing of Prophet Muhammad's cartoons and we praise the Mujahidin who carried out the attack on French newspaper which they desired for this punishment,” the mosque's Imam, Maulawi Salahuddin, told worshipers during the Friday sermon.
He also asked Afghan youth to emulate the attack. "You should also attack on foreign invaders in Afghanistan,” he added.
The attack was earlier lauded by the Afghan Taliban, who called Charlie Hebdo's drawings "repugnant" and said they are offensive to Muslims.
Countering scattered protests against Charlie Hebdo, there have also been many within Afghanistan who condemned the gunmen.
Afghan President Ashraf Ghani strongly condemned the terrorist attack after it happened, saying: “Killing of defenseless people and civilians is a heinous act of terrorism, and there is no justification for this brutal act.”
On Jan. 10 politicians and writers joined protesters in marching through the northern city of Mazar-e-Sharif in a rally to condemn the attack. They tore pictures of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the leader of the ISIL militant group.
Güncelleme Tarihi: 16 Ocak 2015, 16:31