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One year on: Charlie Hebdo to publish anniversary issue

French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, is set to mark the first anniversary of the attacks on its Paris offices with a special edition, set to be published this Wednesday.

The front cover of the 32-page special edition shows a bearded man representing God with a Kalashnikov rifle, with the accompanied (translated) headline saying "One year later: The assassin is still on the run."

The cover of Charlie Hebdo, to mark the first anniversary of the attacks on 7 January 2015.
Courtesy of Charlie Hebdo | Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty Images
The cover of Charlie Hebdo, to mark the first anniversary of the attacks on 7 January 2015.

On January 7 2015, two Islamist militants burst into the Paris offices of Charlie Hebdo and opened fire, killing some 12 people over its cartoons.

In the three days following the attack, 17 people in total were killed, ending in a siege at a kosher supermarket and a raid on a printing facility on the outskirts of Paris.

Throughout this week, the European country plans on remembering the victims with memorial plaques, eulogies and other public ceremonies.

The magazine is expected to release around one million copies, with several thousand more to be sold overseas, with Charlie Hebdo's director and a cartoonist, Laurent "Riss" Sourisseau, publishing a special editorial to mark the anniversary. In the piece, Sourisseau condemns "fanatics brutalized by the Koran."

In the piece, Sourisseau documents the history of the magazine, which then goes on to a vivid description of what happened January 7, of which Sourisseau was one of those who survived the attack.

While he admits "2015 was the most terrible year in the history of Charlie Hebdo," he adds that the newspaper would not have survived financially if the horrific event had not happened.

"In short, Jan. 7 was our luck because at once the whole of France began to read Charlie. Imagine the effect that reading such words can make on those who tried to get up. Again, the existence of Charlie was an anomaly. Even in these nightmarish times," Sourisseau said in the (translated) piece, emailed to CNBC.

Following the attack in January 2015, some 7.5 million individuals bought the first post-attacks issue, and 200,000 people signed up for a subscription to the magazine.

Agence France-Presse contributed to this report