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Charlie Hebdo comes under fire on social media for publishing a cartoon depicting Italian earthquake victims as pasta dishes.

The cartoon which features in the satirical French magazine’s current issue refers to the town of Amatrice, one of the areas hardest hit by the 6.2-magnitude earthquake last week.

Amatrice is home of spaghetti all’amatriciana, a dish with ingredients including tomato sauce, and guanciale ham.

Photo Charlie Hebdo

Photo Charlie Hebdo

The cartoon shows an injured man and a woman standing next to a pile of rubble from which feet can be seen. Each of the standing figures has been named after a pasta dish.

The bandaged man is shown under the words penne tomato sauce, a woman with burns is depicted as penne gratin, and bodies lying beneath layers of rubble as lasagna all beneath the heading “Earthquake Italian style”.

The image which is being circulated on social media has attracted huge criticism globally and in Italy it has made the pages of Italian national newspapers La Stampa and Corriere della Serra.

Photo Facebook

Photo Facebook

The French embassy in Italy released a statement saying the cartoons were not representative of France’s position.

It is not the first time hashtag #CharlieHebdo has been used on social media to express outrage at one of its cartoons.

Charlie Hebdo is no stranger to criticism. In 2015 it published a controversial cartoon of the young Syrian refugee Alan Kurdi who drowned while fleeing Syria and has also posted controversial sketches of the Prophet Muhammad.