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Humanitarian biometrics: gateway or barrier?

This comic is based on research by Keren Weitzberg, a senior lecturer in the School of Politics and International Relations and a fellow at the Institute for the Humanities and Social Sciences at Queen Mary University of London. The artwork is by Kenian comic artist Maddo. The story explores the problem of a biometric database, set up by the UNHCR, that labels people as refugees, preventing them to get the Kenyan nationality, even if they are Kenyan. read the comic here below or download the PDF.

Human Biometrics 1

Human Biometrics 2

Human Biometrics 3

Human Biometrics 4

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Human Biometrics 6

Human Biometrics 7

Western Balkans media freedom cartoon competition: exhibition & winners

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In January we launched a cartoon competition, together with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, in the six countries that make up the Western Balkans: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro North Macedonia and Serbia.

Out of a total of 186 submissions from 95 artists, a jury of journalism and comic professionals selected 44 works for a cartoon exhibition on media freedom. You can see all the submissions (and more info on the jury members) on our project page.The jury was also tasked with picking a winner and a runner-up. They decided to award first prize to Dušan Petričić from Serbia, with a caricature of Serbian president Vučić. The jury was impressed by the style and execution of the cartoon and the fact that the artist needed no words to convey a clear message. The cartoon also has universal appeal; if you do not know who Vučić is, you will most likely still understand the visual message.


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The winning cartoon by Dušan Petričić


Second place was awarded to Armend Ajredini from North Macedonia. Armend is an editorial illustrator for Gazeta, a publication in Kosovo. The jury complimented his clear style. They were also happy to see journalists presented not as victims, but as professionals that can alter the status qua with the work that they do.


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The cartoon that won second place, by Armend Ajredini


Although not part of the official awards, the jury also decided to give a special mention to Anastasija Visekruna, a 16-year old artist Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although the message in the image might not be as straightforward as in the winning cartoons, the visual intrigued the judges and sparked debate about the meaning of the drawing. The goal of a cartoonist is to create an interesting image that will make people think; in that, Anastasija certainly succeeded.


A special mention was awarded to this cartoon by Anastasija Visekruna


The exhibition is on display in the six countries of the Western Balkans in April and May. Here below are some impressions of the exhibitions.


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Podgorica - Montenegro


Montenegro 1
Podgorica - Montenegro


Skopje - North Macedonia


WhatsApp Image 2024-04-25 at 14.51.19
Belgrade - Serbia


WhatsApp Image 2024-04-25 at 14.51.19
Belgrade - Serbia

Our March newsletter is out!


A day late (we usually send our newsletter out on Monday) because of Easter, but our monthly update from the world of political cartooning is out. Read it here to discover our latest news and last month's most popular cartoons. If you haven't subscribed yet, you can do so here.

And remember, we also send out a newsletter every weekday with our daily cartoon, t0 which you can subscribe here.