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Monday, February 27, 2006

Portuguese cartoonist in Iranian contest

The renowned Portuguese cartoonist Augusto Cid will be taking part in the controversial Iranian contest, cartoons of the Holocaust, which was launched on Monday. The competition is a response over caricatures of the Prophet Mohammed that have angered Muslims worldwide, with the selected cartoons being posted on a Website run in association with Iran's biggest selling newspaper Hamshahri.

Cid stated that the contest had inspired him but he was "not sure his drawing adhered to the spirit of the contest launched by Hamshahri" as "it will test Iran's own freedom of expression", O Independente said.

The drawing depicts Iranian President Mahmud Ahmadinejad, who claims that the Holocaust is a myth, explaining on a visit to Auschwitz that the deaths recorded there were caused by bird flu. The newsppper Hamshahri, which is published by Tehran's conservative municipality, says that the competition will explore the limits on freedom of expression in the West following the recent publication of cartoons of the Prophet Mohammed in mainly European countries.

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