Iran closes French research institute in response to Charlie Hebdo’s sacrilegious cartoons

January 5, 2023 - 23:7

TEHRAN - In response to the French weekly magazine Charlie Hebdo’s insulting cartoons against Iran’s top religious authority, the Foreign Ministry on Thursday closed a French institute studying ancient Persian antiquities.

The Institut Français de Recherche en Iran is part of the cultural wing of the French embassy. 

The ministry said the closure of the institute was "the first step" in response to the sacrilegious cartoons.

The move comes after the ministry decried Charlie Hebdo’s obscene move as an indication that Zionism has utilized media to act against Islam and promote hatred and division among human beings.

The controversial magazine had in early December announced a competition for producing the cartoons.

The Foreign Ministry said such an offensive move by the notorious magazine amounts to the violation of the recognized moral norms, desecration of religious sanctities, a sacrilegious move against the political and religious authorities, and an offense against the administrative symbols and Iranians’ national values.

Charlie Hebdo’s insult reveals once again that Zionism has taken advantage of media to promote anti-Islamic sentiments and foment hatred and division among societies and people, the ministry added.

On Wednesday, the ministry also summoned French Ambassador to Tehran Nicolas Roche in protest to the insulting cartoons.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran brooks by no means any insults to its sanctities, and Islamic, religious, and national values,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Nasser Kanaani told the French ambassador at the meeting, Press TV reported.

“France has no right to justify insults to sanctities of other countries and Muslim nations under the pretext of freedom of expression,” Kanaani said, expressing Tehran’s “strong protest” to the French government.

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