White House Press Secretary Jay Carney on Wednesday criticized the "judgment" of a French satirical magazine for publishing cartoons that are critical of the Islamist political movement, amid the routine threat of attacks by Islamists during President Barack Obama's re-election campaign.

"We are aware that a French magazine published cartoons featuring a figure resembling the prophet Muhammad, and obviously we have questions about the judgment of publishing something like this," Carney told reporters during a midday press briefing at the White House.

"We know these images will be deeply offensive to many and have the potential be be inflammatory," Carney said in a prepared statement.

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