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Charlie Hebdo reprinting caricatures that sparked attack

Charlie Hebdo reprinting caricatures that sparked attack
© Getty

Charlie Hebdo, a French satirical paper whose staff was attacked by Islamist extremists five years ago, will reprint caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed that inspired the killers' deadly attacks.

The publication announced the reprinting Tuesday on the eve of the first trial related to the January 2015 attacks that resulted in 17 deaths, 12 of which were at the paper's editorial offices, The Associated Press reported.

All three attackers died in near-simultaneous police raids, according to the report.

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The paper made its decision to republish the cartoon caricature on the principle that "history cannot be rewritten nor erased," with Charlie Hebdo's front cover this week displaying several of the cartoons with the headline, "All of that, just for this," Deutsche Welle reported.

Thirteen men and one woman accused of providing the attackers with weapons and logistics go on trial Wednesday.

The attackers, brothers Chérif and Said Kouachi, are cited for declaring, "We have avenged the Prophet" and claiming the attack in al Qaeda's name.

The paper previously declined to publish Mohammed caricatures since the attacks, but said the trial's advent made it necessary.

Two days after the attack, an acquaintance of the brothers attacked four hostages in a Jewish supermarket on the eve of the Jewish Sabbath, later claiming allegiance to the Islamic State group.

In 2011, the publication's Paris offices were firebombed, resulting in its editorial leadership being placed under law enforcement protection, which remains in place.

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Charlie Hebdo's director Laurent Sourisseau, who also goes by Riss, named each of the victims in a foreword to this week's edition.

"Rare are those who, five years later, dare oppose the demands that are still so pressing from religions in general, and some in particular," Riss penned.

The violent events that shook France five years ago were met with condemnation from other nations and support for the French government, raising its intelligence structure and elevating the country's national security budget.