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Syrian security forces beat editorial cartoonist

Syrian’s most prominent editorial cartoonist, Ali Ferzat, was kidnapped and beaten by Syrian security forces as they crack down on vocal dissidents.

From the Guardian:

Fame has in the past offered a measure of protection from the full force of the regime, allowing outspoken cultural figures to get away with more criticism than others. But in recent weeks, a string of artists, writers and actors have been arrested.

“Ferzat’s arrest is part of an intimidation campaign by security forces who have increasing leeway,” Ammar Abdulhamid, a US-based dissident and son of the actor Mona Wasif said. “At this stage fame may be more of a danger than a protection because the regime does not want any prominent figure to come to the fore and provide a public face for the revolution.”

Ali was dumped bleeding at the side of a road and was discovered by passerby.

UPDATED: The Washington Post has photos of Ali in the hospital. The security forces broke his hands.

Community Comments

#1 Eric Allie
August/25/2011
@ 9:33 am

Strong letter to follow.

#2 Steve Skelton
August/25/2011
@ 9:47 am

M

#3 Gerry Mooney
August/25/2011
@ 10:26 am

What can we do as Americans and cartoonists to show our support for Ferzat and others like him? Can we start a discussion here of concrete steps, if there are any? This is a wakeup call to cartoonists around the world to step up and take action.

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