Tuesday 3 February 2015
In the wake of the January 7 attack on the offices of Charlie Hebdo in Paris, the International Campaign for Human Rights in Iran released a video, featuring nine prominent Iranian cartoonists, satirists and comedians expressing their solidarity with the victims of the attack and the defense of free speech.
The video, Iranian Cartoonists and Satirists Speak Out on Charlie Hebdo, contains commentary from celebrated Iranian cartoonists and satirists, many of whom were forced to flee Iran after publishing work critical of Iranian authorities and official policies.
Several of the artists featured, including cartoonist Kianoush Ramezani, satirist Alireza Rezaie and cartoonist Mana Neyestani, currently reside in France and in the video, express their sadness over this attack in the country that provided them refuge and a safe creative space.
In addition to expressions of sympathy, the nine artists describe what freedom of expression means to them, and why defending the right to free speech is so critical for their work.
The video features, in order of credited appearance, cartoonist Kianoush Ramezani, political-social satirist Alireza Rezaie, cartoonist Mana Neyestani, cartoonist and animator Afshin Sabouki, political satirist Kambiz Hosseini, cartoonist Touka Neyestani, cartoonist Nikahang Kowsar, author and political satirist Ebrahim Nabavi and comedian Maz Jobrani.
The work of some of these artists and other commentators was previously featured in Sketches of Iran: A Glimpse from the Front Lines of Human Rights, a compilation of cartoons and essays on human rights published by the Campaign in January 2013.