Politics

Iran Organizes Anti-ISIS Cartoon Competition

The anti-Isis cartoon competition is open to submissions from around the world which poke fun at the militant group.

Competition organizers will select certain works to be put on display at four cultural centers in different areas of the Iranian capital, Tehran, and a winner will be announced on 31 May.

Iran Organizes Anti-ISIS Cartoon Competition

Anti-Isis cartoon competition: Submissions received from around the world

Iran’s IRNA news agency reports that the country’s House of Cartoon told the artists to use “the crimes committed by the Islamic State (Isis)” as the basis for their inspiration. Executive secretary of the contest, Mohammad Habibi, stated that so far 280 cartoons had been selected from around 800 submissions. Entries have been received from more than 40 countries worldwide, including Brazil, Australia and Indonesia.

Habibi told the Tehran Times that foreign cartoonists were in attendance at the contest, although security concerns meant that they had traveled under pseudonyms.

“Nowadays everyone around the world knows about the parasite by the name of Isis and what crimes they have committed against humanity and art and culture. Artists now have the duty to raise public awareness about this group by participating in such events,” he said during an interview with Iran’s Press TV.

Graphic artist Massoud Shoajaei Tabatabaii told Press TV that the competition was taking place “in order to reveal the true nature of Daesh” (the Persian name for Isis). “Daesh tries to associate itself with Islam but in essence it has no idea about Islam,” he said.

Anti-Western sentiments on show

The House of Cartoon is funded by the local government in Tehran, and previously held a competition about Holocaust denial. The organizers have previously stated that that Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu, French President Francois Hollande, British PM David Cameron and US president Barack Obama are supporters of Isis.

A number of the submissions allude to the belief that the United States and Israel are behind Isis, including one which shows a hand wearing a stars and stripes cuff placing wind-up soldiers onto a battlefield.

The organizers plan to take the exhibit on the road, and bring their message to people in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon following the announcement of the winner this coming Sunday.