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Posted at 1:10 PM ET, 08/ 4/2009

Iranian Cartoonists Plan to Boycott Famed Biennial

By Michael Cavna

More than 100 Iranian cartoonists have drawn a line. In the sand.

According to Nik Kowsar, an exiled Iranian political cartoonist now living near Toronto, many of his colleagues have decided to boycott the Ninth Tehran International Cartoon Biennial, scheduled for late October. The boycott is a reaction to the government's post-election actions, says Kowsar, adding that the Cartoon Biennial is run by the government's ministry of culture.

Tehran-based cartoonist Sepideh Anjomrooz tells Comic Riffs that she and more than 100 of her colleagues have signed a "manifesto" to state why they are boycotting the Tehran Biennial, which historically has drawn major cartoonists from around the world.

The Web site is among those posting the "manifesto of some of Iranian cartoonists about the 9th Tehran international Cartoon Biennial."

Published by Roozonline.comEnlarge Image

Kowsar, who was jailed in 2000 in Iran because of his editorial cartooning, says that since the election, cartoonists and other journalists in Iran have faced particularly harsh censorship and government questioning. (He notes that three of his journalistic colleagues -- friends who are bloggers -- have gone missing since the election.) Kowsar says the boycott is also a show of support for Iranian citizens who have protested Iran's actions in recent months.

By Michael Cavna  | August 4, 2009; 1:10 PM ET
Categories:  General, The Political Cartoon  
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