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Morocco bans publications reprinting French cartoons

Moroccan authorities have banned the distribution of some foreign newspapers and magazines that had reprinted material offending to Islam's prophet Muhammad previously printed by the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo.

Government spokesman Mustapha Khalfi said on Saturday that the government had rejected to offer distribution licenses to some foreign newspapers that reprinted cartoons offending to prophet Muhammad.

"This was done in the light of Article no. 29 of the press and publishing law in Morocco," Khalfi told reporters.

He declined, however, to mention the names of the newspapers denied distribution licenses.

At Moroccan newsstands, major French newspapers were not to be found late on Friday because of the decision of the Moroccan government.

Article no. 29 of Morocco's press and publishing law gives the country's Communications Minister the right to ban publications that offend religion, Morocco's monarchy or unity.

Twelve people, including eight journalists, were killed on Wednesday in an attack by two gunmen on the offices of a French satirical magazine in capital Paris.

The attackers were reported to have contacts with some radical groups, including the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which has captured vast territories in both Iraq and Syria.

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