First Charlie Hebdo issue since Paris attacks goes on sale

theguardian.com – People queued before dawn at kiosks across France for the first edition of the weekly to go on sale since last week’s attacks.

Large queues formed outside French magazine kiosks as the first edition of Charlie Hebdo went on sale since last week’s terrorist attack on the magazine’s office killed eight of its journalists. Some outlets reported that hundreds of copies of the magazine were sold in the first few minutes of going on sale by customers eager to show support for free speech in the wake of the attack. Despite a print run of up to 3 million copies, including versions in six different languages, many struggled to get hold of the first copies of a magazine that usually has a circulation of only 60,000.

The Guardian’s Anne Penketh said her local newsagent in Paris was so inundated with customers wanting copies of Charlie Hebdo that he hid them and only sold copies to regulars. She said: “While I was there, a couple of people stopped by and asked for a copy, but [the newsagent] said he didn’t have any. He then stooped down and put my copy inside Le Figaro so nobody would see. He says he’s never seen anything like it.”
Long pre-dawn queues of people were seen at many magazine kiosk across Paris including at the Gare du Nord, where dozens of people formed were lining up before 6am.

French journalist Agnes Poirier reported queues at two newsagents in a small town in Brittany where she is based. “I’ve never seen that many people queue for a newsagents to open,” she told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. “I couldn’t get a copy myself because there were too many people, but in a show of generosity the people who got their copies shared with everybody else,” she added.
On eBay, UK-based sellers of the magazine were attracting bids of more than £500 on Wednesday morning. The front cover of the new edition depicts a weeping prophet Muhammad holding a sign saying “Je suis Charlie’” beneath the words “All is forgiven”. It will go on sale in 25 countries.

The magazine’s editor-in-chief, Gérard Biard, said the edition had been made “with joy as well as pain”. Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, he said: “We are happy to have done it, happy to have managed to do it. It was difficult because it had to be something of us, something of the events which we have been confronted with. This edition – the whole of Charlie Hebdo is in it. This edition is Charlie Hebdo.”

He thanked the institutions and individuals who had pledged their support, and money, to the magazine following the attack on its offices last Wednesday that left 12 people dead, including two police officers.
“There will be a future, there is no doubt about that,” Biard said. “We don’t know what it will look like yet, but there will be a magazine, there will be no interruption.”

Matthew Weaver
“First Charlie Hebdo issue since Paris attacks goes on sale”
theguardian.com
January 14, 2015

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