..Free Cartoonist Akram RUSLAN

The Criminal Assad regime has arrested and detained a journalist and cartoonist whose work was highly critical of the regime, and whose artwork has been published throughout the ongoing Syrian Intifada

AkramRuslan, was arrested on October 2ed when Assad intelligence seized him from his office at the newspaper Al-Fidaa in Hama

His detention has been confirmed by the Syrian Journalists Association and a number of posts on Facebook, but his exact whereabouts or the situation he is currently facing are unknown

Ruslan, whose work has been published on numerous pages on Facebook among other locations, has been producing work criticizing the Criminal government, the Intifada and the state media over the past year

His latest cartoon (top) depicted dictator Bashar al-Assad surrounded by flames, holding a sign declaring “Al Assad or we burn the country.”

The DCMF- Doha Center for Media Freedom- issued a statement urging the Syrian authorities to release the cartoonist

The DCMF strongly condemns the detention of the cartoonist, Akram Ruslan, who is currently being held by the Syrian authorities for exercising his right to freedom of expression. The centre urges the Syrian authorities to release Rslan immediately and to put an end to the ongoing targeting of journalists and critics of the Assad regime. The government must do more to ensure that members of the media are protected and do not face intimidation, harassment or detention as a result of carrying out their work

DCMF has expressed solidarity with Syrian journalists who are working in some of the most difficult and dangerous conditions anywhere in the world at the moment, and we urge the government to ensure that Akram Rslan and any other journalists under detention are released immediately and face no further persecution”

Earlier on August 25, 2011, Ali Ferzat, the 60-year-old famous cartoonist was dragged and beaten by three masked men, who then also broke his hands

It was only a matter of time before Ruslan was arrested as he continued tocriticize the regime and its oppression, going so far as to attack the President himself
Ruslan did not hide and he remained in his home and at his job in the Hama-based Fedaa newspaper. The regime eventually lost its patience with him and arrested him from his workplace on Monday, October 2, 2012. Since then, there has been no information about him

Akram Rslan, born in 1974 in Soran, Hama, (mid-east Syria) is an 1996 literature graduate. He is one of the many, many members of our revolution who prefer to struggle away from the media and the limelight, and whom we know little about until they get arrested or martyred. Freedom for the artist Akram Ruslan

See selection of Rulan's work


Criminal Syrian Regime Prevents Syrians From Entering Syria

..An Eyewitness Story

Since we started our journey from Beirut at 4:30 in the afternoon we were told that the road is packed 
Syrian guy who works with me called me from his Syrian phone and told me that the Lebanese are not cooperating with them and they closed the doors of the frontiers office and not stamping any documents for any one

After a while he calls to tell me that he’s at the Syrian borders and the security there are asking them to buy an exit visa and go back to Lebanon and they are treating people aggressively and that he saw a man being hit by the back of the gun. He called for a third time saying that he paid 1500 SYP to pass

We reached the Lebanese boarders and there were lots of people coming in from Syria. I asked the soldier at the checkpoint he said it’s been like this since very early in the morning as lots of people are coming back from the Syrian borders and specially from those cities like Idlib, Homs, Aleppo and so on

In the middle of the nomansland, the line of cars started and we saw people walking back in Lebanon’s direction. It was when we decided to walk to the Duty Free to use the toilet. We asked some of the people going back about their story, they said they are from Idlib and they were denied entry and are forced to go back and that they were at the borders since 6 in the morning. Vans packed with family were returning same direction as well and children are crying

Near the duty free, there was a young soldier with a gun and he asked us where are you going so I tld him to the bathroom and I asked him what’s going on here, he said we are ordered to check severely as there are new about Sa’ad Al Hariri smuggling terrorists and weapons to Syria and he said with his accent (بدي قلك مع انه ما لازم قلك) we were informed that there are 2000 armed men in Anjar! I asked him why Syrians are going back to Lebanon, he said those people just remembered they love their countries and they are coming to make troubles

We went to stamp our papers and I asked the officer at the counter what is happening, he said it’s Wa’afeh and there are lots of people and we are working maximum capacity. I asked him is it true you’re asking people to go back; he said no it’s a lie! Then another one of higher rank said the other frontiers are closed (north) that’s why there is so many people

We waited for our driver to get out his care around 2 hours and he finally came and we moved to the customs checkpoint but before we reached it there was a huge line of cars waiting at a checkpoint with security armed men stopping car by car and checking papers and asking some people to return back to Lebanon as simple as this. I came down of the car as our driver went to stamp the car papers and started smoking a cigarette and was watching what’s happening. One of the armed men came to us and he asked for alight. And I asked him why people are returning he said only the people who are not supposed to come this way, like the northern regions, they should go from the other borders points as it’s safer for them, I asked him, are they opened? He said yes

A bunch of poor guys were forced to wait at the side of the road I sneaked and talked to them, they said they are from northern regions and they are asked to wait and denied entry to Syria. A guy from Daraa said we are letting us in as well as people from Sweida

A full bus from Idlib just returned to Lebanon in from of our eys! It was so sad
All buses and vans are checked one by one and ID’s are separated and people are walking either back or onwards depending on their ID