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Mana Neyestani: Cartoons for Iran

Written by Sabine Küper on . Posted in Subversives, Urban Chant

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In a free environment humour is the gate to peoples heart

In dictatorships it is the biggest weapon against the opressors

And the fastest path to hell on earth

Peace to the huts, Fire for the palaces!

Mana Neyestani  (born 1973, in Tehran  is an Iranian cartoonist and illustrator for economic, intellectual, political, cultural, and professional magazines. He is particularly known for his work for the newspaper Zan and Persian language Radio Zamaneh.

Neyestani is of Iranian Azerbajani ethnicity. Riots erupted by ethnic Azerbaijanis in Iran when they took offense to a Neyestani cartoon published in the children’s section of the 12 May 2006 supplement of Iran, a government-run newspaper. The cartoon depicted a cockroach responding in Azerbaijani. Neyestani, along with Mehrdad Ghasemfar, the editor-in-chief of Iran, were arrested by government officials and the newspaper was closed down following the riots.

Neyestani and the editor of the paper ended up in solitary confinement in Tehran’s Evin prison under conditions the cartoonist described as  “Kafkaesque”. Three months later, Neyestani was given a temporary prison leave and used it to flee the country with his wife. He finally ended up in exile in France where he published a graphic novel titled “An Iranian Metamorphosis,” about his time in prison.

Two young activists got executed in Iran: http://www.inenart.eu/?p=13788


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