Sunday, September 26, 2010

Cartoonist In Hot Soup Again

According to Yahoo! News, Malaysian political cartoonist Zunar said Friday he had been arrested under the Sedition Act and his offices raided by police over his new book, just hours before its planned launch (Webpage, posted September 24, 2010).

Zulkifli Anwar Ulhaque (better known as Zunar) uses cartoons to highlight contentious issues such as the sodomy trial of opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim and police shootings. Known for his wit and grit and critical observations of Malaysia’s political scene through his hilarious sketches, Zunar has always shown his determination in calling a spade a spade. He has effectively exposed abuse and corruption in a simplistic manner, which a thousand words would find difficult to achieve. He should not be penalised for doing a great service to the nation even if his views came into conflict with those of the powers-that-be.

Zunar said police seized more than 60 copies of his latest book, called "Cartoon-O-Phobia", at his home and held him ahead of its scheduled launch Friday evening.

"Police came and raided my office in the afternoon... now they said I am arrested under the Sedition Act," he told AFP by telephone while in custody at a police station. "They say my new book is seditious. Certainly this is intimidation of cartoonists," he said, adding that police had not told him which cartoon in the book was considered seditious. Police officials could not be immediately reached for comment.

Zunar’s arrest is a worrying testimony of the state of freedom of expression in Malaysia.

In the SPL, Celtic triumphed 2-1 over Hibernian. Former Hibs midfielder Scott Brown gave Celtic their first goal when he volleyed in from 18 yards (5) and then after the break, a Glenn Loovens header sneaking in (54) stretched Celtic's lead. Riordan pulled a goal back for Hibs when he sent a superb lob from the edge of the penalty box over the towering Celtic goalkeeper Fraser Forster and into the net three minutes later.

But in the EPL, both Liverpool and Arsenal disappoint. Liverpool only managed a 2-2 draw against Sunderland, the Reds had goals courtesy of Kuyt (5) and Gerrard (64). Meanwhile, Arsenal was outclassed by West Brom – the latter struck three times before the Gunners replied through Nasri (75, 90+1).

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