Malaysian cartoonist Zunar, on a speaking tour in England, got word in the early hours of Wednesday, January 28, that his office in Kuala Lumpur was being raided by police. The police questioned Zunar’s staff and confiscated 155 copies of two of the cartoonist’s books. The Malaysian government has been weighing sedition charges against Zunar since November, 2014 — this despite a unanimous Court of Appeal decision a month earlier that the government had “acted unreasonably and irrationally” in banning and confiscating Zunar’s books in 2010. Reacting to the police action, Zunar told The Malaysian Digest: “The government condemned Charlie Hebdo’s attackers but now they are ‘attacking’ me.” [Full story]
With thanks to the global cartooning community, including this cartoon by Turkish cartoonist and former CRNI Courage Award winner Musa Kart, CRNI contributor Joanne Conger has compiled a gallery of close to 500 cartoons from around the world . We will continue to update this gallery and follow the aftermath of the attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris, and with our mission to defend political cartoonists on the front lines of free speech, who are all too often the first victims of those opposed to freedom of expression. Nous sommes Charlie!
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The staff and Board of Directors of Cartoonists Rights Network International (CRNI) are horrified by the attack against the French satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo. Our hearts and thoughts are with the survivors and the families of those whose lives were taken in this senseless act of weakness. Dr. Robert Russell, Executive Director of CRNI, was quoted as saying, “Cartoonists are among the first people targeted by extremists and fundamentalists for poking fun at the sacred cows of our societies. Humor and satire are tools that close-minded extremists have little defense against except by the use of weapons and murder.” We are in awe at the courage of the French cartoonists at Charlie Hebdo, we look forward to the next issue, and admire the society and environment that promotes this level of free speech. They are our heroes. [full story]
In his July 3rd cartoon for the Jakarta Post, Stephff (Stefane Peray) depicted an ISIS operative hoisting an ISIS flag on which the flag’s design morphs into a skull and crossbones. On December 12th, five months later, police announced that Jakarta Post editor Meidyatama Suryodiningrat could be charged under Indonesia’s much-criticized blasphemy laws because of the publication of that cartoon. [full story]
In the United States the public is involved in a deeply impassioned and important dialogue about weaknesses in our system of justice. In recent weeks incidents involving young black men killed in confrontations with officers from their local police departments have weighed on the nation’s conscience. In all of these situations the public has perceived that unnecessary, excessive force and a rush to judgment was used by police in situations that resulted in the death of unarmed and possibly innocent young men. In two of these cases the local prosecutor’s offices refused to indict the police officers of any kind of a crime. In one case the coroner ruled that the young man’s death was clearly a homicide. (full story)