(WASHINGTON, D.C., 1/13/15) -- On Wednesday, January 14, representatives of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) will hold a media availability at the Muslim civil rights organization's Capitol Hill headquarters in Washington, D.C., to offer reaction to the publication Wednesday of Charlie Hebdo magazine in France featuring a cartoon of the Prophet Muhammad on the cover.
WHAT: CAIR Media Availability on New Charlie Hebdo magazine Cover
WHEN: Wednesday, January 14, 11 a.m.
WHERE: CAIR's Capitol Hill Headquarters, 453 New Jersey Avenue S.E., Washington, D.C.
"Just as Charlie Hebdo has the right to publish, we have the right to peacefully challenge negative portrayals of our religious figures," said CAIR National Executive Director Nihad Awad. "The answer to speech one disagrees with should not be violence, but should instead be more speech promoting tolerance and mutual understanding."
Awad noted that the issue is not about religion, because Islam protects freedom of speech and respectful interactions with others, even when there is disagreement.
While the publication date is Wednesday, a sneak preview of the cover has been released. The preview cover shows what purports to be a weeping Prophet Muhammad holding a sign saying "I Am Charlie" under the headline "All is Forgiven."
Awad noted that after years of being insulted, defamed, attacked, mistreated, and having his followers tortured and killed by the people of Mecca, the Prophet Muhammad returned victorious to that city and forgave its people, then said, "Go your way, for you are all free."
SEE: Muslims' Mixed Response to New Mohammed Cover (CNN)
Charlie Hebdo Fallout: Specter of Fascist Past Haunts European Nationalism
Over 50 Anti-Muslim Incidents Reported in France After Charlie Hebdo Attack
Mosques Fire Bombed and Pelted with Pig Heads in Aftermath of Paris Terror Attacks
CAIR is America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy organization. Its mission is to enhance the understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims, and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.
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