Charlie Hebdo under fire over cartoons depicting Aylan Kurdi

Charlie Hebdo under fire over cartoons depicting Aylan Kurdi
French magazine Charlie Hebdo has once again stirred up controversy with its cartoons, with many people condemning them as distasteful and others calling them 'satire'.
2 min read
15 September, 2015
Aylan has become the symbol of the current refugee crisis [Charlie Hebdo]

Charlie Hebdo has been harshly criticised and could be facing legal action after publishing cartoons on the death of three-year-old Syrian Aylan Kurdi - cartoons which many people have deemed disrespectful.

The latest edition of the controversial satirical French magazine features a cartoon of dead Aylan lying face down in the sand under the caption "So Close to Goal", with a McDonald's advertisement above him reading: "Two children's menus for the price of one."

A second cartoon, "Proof that Christians walk on water", shows a man who resembles Jesus strolling on the surface of the Mediterranean - as a partially submerged child says "Muslim children sink".

Aylan has become the symbol of the current refugee crisis after heart-breaking pictures showed his lifeless body washed up on a Turkish beach.

"The Society of Black Lawyers will consider reporting this as incitement to hate crime and persecution before the International Criminal Court," tweeted Chair of the London-based Society of Black Lawyers, Peter Herbert.

The magazine's cartoons have sparked outrage on social media.

"No one should be Charlie Hebdo this time. Their mocking celebration of Syrian boy Aylan Kurdi is a spineless attempt at satire. Despicable," tweeted sports journalist Saddique Shaban.

But other social media users said the comics were a scathing assessment of the West's inhumane and capitalist approach to the refugee crisis.

"The McDonald's image is a searing critique of heartless European consumerism in the face of one of the worst human tragedies of our times," said liberal British Muslim activist Maajid Nawaz.

"The image about Christians walking on water while Muslims drown is - so obviously - critiquing hypocritical European Christian 'love'."

In January, armed men who identified as members of al-Qaeda stormed the magazine's Paris offices, killing 11 people in the building and injuring another 11.

The magazine had published images mocking Prophet Muhammad.