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Satirical Weekly Charlie Hebdo Mocks Chancellor Angela Merkel in First German Edition, almost 2 Years after Islamist Militants attacked its top Editorial Staff in Paris

The magazine is known in France for ridiculing political and religious leaders

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The first issues of the German version of French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo are for sale at a newsstand in Berlin, Dec. 1, 2016. VOA
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The first German edition of satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo hit the news stands on Thursday, with a front page lampooning Chancellor Angela Merkel, almost two years after Islamist militants attacked its top editorial staff in Paris.

The magazine also picked on another symbol of post-war German might — Europe’s biggest carmaker Volkswagen, still struggling to recover from its diesel emissions scandal.

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[bctt tweet=”Launch posters showed Merkel sitting on the toilet reading the magazine.” username=””]

“VW backs Merkel,” reads the headline, with a picture showing a VW mechanic fixing 62-year-old Merkel on a hydraulic lift, saying: “A new exhaust pipe and you’ll run for another four years.”

Merkel announced last month she would stand for a fourth term in elections next year.

Launch posters showed Merkel sitting on the toilet reading the magazine, with the slogan: “Charlie Hebdo. It’s liberating.”

The magazine, known in France for ridiculing political and religious leaders, became a symbol for the freedom of expression after two militants broke into an editorial meeting at its Paris office in Jan. 2015 and killed 12 people.

The Islamists accused the magazine of blasphemy for printing cartoons of the Prophet Mohammad.

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Some German customers said they were buying the magazine as a gesture of solidarity.

“For me, this is more a feeling that I support this and I want it to continue now that it has just started,” said Tim Wuennemann.

An initial run of 200,000 will be printed in Germany — twice the circulation of the country’s current best-known satirical magazine, Titanic. Some of its contents will be original, some translated from the French.

The boundaries of satire were tested this year when Turkey’s Tayyip Erdogan took legal action against German comedian Jan Boehmermann for broadcasting a satirical poem suggesting the president engaged in bestiality and watched child pornography. (VOA)

 

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German Automobile Group Volkswagen Partners with Microsoft For Developing Connected Cars

Volkswagen said it would also establish a new automotive Cloud development office in North America near Microsoft's headquarters

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Volkswagen partners with Microsoft to develop connected cars. Pixabay

In its bid to become a mobility provider with fully connected vehicle fleet, German automobile group Volkswagen has entered into a strategic partnership with Microsoft to leverage the US software giant’s Cloud expertise.

As part of the partnership, the two companies will collaborate to develop the “Volkswagen Automotive Cloud”, a dedicated platform for all future Volkswagen digital services and mobility offerings.

In the future, Volkswagen’s fleet of cars will become mobile Internet of Things (IoT) hubs linked by Microsoft Azure, the German car maker said in a statement this week.

“The strategic partnership with Microsoft will turbocharge our digital transformation,” said Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess.

Via the Volkswagen Automotive Cloud, the automobile group plans to optimise the interconnection of vehicle, Cloud-based platform and customer-centric services for all brands.

Volkswagen Logo
Volkswagen Logo, Wikimedia Commons

“Volkswagen is harnessing technology to digitally transform and deliver innovative new connected car services to its customers,” said Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft.

“The world’s leading companies run on Azure, and we are thrilled that Volkswagen has chosen Microsoft. Together we will reimagine the driving experience for people everywhere,” Nadella said.

From 2020 onwards, more than five million new Volkswagen-brand vehicles per year will be fully connected and will be part of the IoT in the Cloud, Volkswagen said.

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In the future, all in-car services for vehicles of the core Volkswagen brand as well as the Group-wide Cloud-based platform will be built on Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform and services as well as Azure IoT Edge.

Volkswagen said it would also establish a new automotive Cloud development office in North America near Microsoft’s headquarters. (IANS)