Irish readers face further wait for Charlie Hebdo

Distributors expect the French magazine to arrive next week


Expectant Irish readers are set to be deprived of the ‘survivor’ issue of Charlie Hebdo until at least next week, according to distributors.

The special edition, released to commemorate victims of the January 7th shootings at the publication’s headquarters in Paris, first went on sale in France on Wednesday of last week.

More than 120 newsagents and retailers across Ireland had expected to receive a shipment of 2,000 copies of the satirical magazine on January 16th, which failed to materialise.

The print run was upped from a usual run of 60,000 to more than three million copies in order to cater for extra demand, and an additional four million magazines were then commissioned over the course of the next week to cope with further volumes of orders internationally.

A spokesperson for EM News Distribution, the company which intends to import the magazine into Ireland, said they have still not received any definitive confirmation of when the copies will arrive, but expects it may happen next week.

He added that retailers based in London were the only ones to receive the edition from Menzies Distribution, EM’s British parent company, anywhere in the UK or Ireland – and the prospect of a “limited” future supply to Ireland means it is not guaranteed that all orders placed will be fulfilled.

He said the company had received requests from retailers right across the country, and maintains they have received “no complaints whatsoever” from disenfranchised customers.

The spokesperson also confirmed that any magazines which do eventually arrive will be the original French language version rather than in English, and EM are only distributing the special edition as a once-off measure.

People throughout Europe and around the world have expressed a huge interest in Charlie Hebdo’s January 14th release, which was compiled in the aftermath of a catastrophic shooting spree by Islamist militant brothers Said and Cherif Kouachi which left 10 staff members and two police officers dead.

The pair were reportedly angered by the magazine’s depictions of the Muslim prophet Muhammad. The cover of the commemorative issue features a drawing of the prophet weeping, and saying “Tout est pardonné” [All is forgiven].