Tim Cook has personally ensured that an app paying tribute to the victims of the recent Charlie Hebdo terrorist attack has been fast-tracked through the App Store approval process.
The app, which was created by French news firm Nice-Matin, was able to avoid the usually rigorous process after an email was sent to the Apple CEO.
The app allows users to declare their support for free speech by adding a picture of a pen onto the world map alongside the words, “je suis Charlie.” The slogan, which has become popular across social media outlets across the world, demonstrates an individual’s solidarity with the French satirical paper Charlie Hebdo, which saw several members of staff killed in a shooting last week.
The newspaper, which is known for its irreverent humour, has been criticised in the past, especially by Islamic groups angered by the publication’s depiction of the prophet Muhammad.
Staff at Nice-Matin emailed Tim Cook directly and received a reply from one of his assistants in just ten minutes. The app was subsequently available from the store within an hour, with the average approval process usually taking ten days.
According to its description, the app enables users to show their support for democratic values wherever they are in the world.
"Because ‘Je suis Charlie’ has become the symbol of freedom of speech whatever your beliefs, your country and your opinions, download the 'I am Charlie' app and simply state where you stand on today's world map."
A number of technology firms have supported the cause of Charlie Hebdo following the brutal terrorist attacks that struck the Paris-based firm last week. Apple added a “Je suis Charlie” footer to its French site, while Google donated $300,000 (£199,000) to the satirical newspaper.