Turkey has condemned Charlie Hebdo for “cultural racism” over a cover of the French satirical magazine’s edition published Wednesday that mocks President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.“French President Emmanuel Macron’s anti-Muslim agenda is bearing fruit,” said Fahrettin Altun, Erdogan’s communications director, describing the caricatures as “loathsome.”
The magazine tweeted the cover, which features a caricature of Mr Erdogan sitting in a chair and lifting the dress of a woman to reveal her backside and is titled “Erdogan – he’s a lot of fun in private.
“Its clearly the product of a xenophobic, Islamophobic, and intolerant cultural environment the French leadership seems to want for their country,’’ Mr Altun said.
Turkey and France are already embroiled in a furious row, with Mr Erdogan disparaging Mr Macron and questioning his mental health after the French president outlined measures which he said would protect his country’s secular values against radical Islam.
Mr Altun said“these kinds of irresponsible and senseless attacks on our culture will only breed racism and discrimination.’’
According to him, all sensible European friends should combat intellectual barrenness and uncivilised discourse.
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Mr Erdogan appealed to Turks to boycott French brands, following similar actions in Muslim-majority countries in response to Macron’s support for controversial caricatures depicting the prophet Mohammed, which originally appeared in Charlie Hebdo.
The Mohammed cartoons are deemed blasphemous by Muslims.
France “will not give up our cartoons,” Mr Macron said after teacher Samuel Paty was beheaded near Paris for showing the cartoons in a class on freedom of expression.