Universidad EAFIT, Colombia
About Freedom of pressThe freedom of press is one of the fundamentals principles for democratic systems, alongside freedom of opinion and freedom of speech. It is defined in the United Nations’ Universal Declaration of Human Rights from 1948 that “ Everyone has the right to freedom of opinion and expression; this right includes freedom to hold opinions without interference, and to seek, receive, and impart information and ideas through any media regardless of frontiers”.
Background and context
Now, a little background check on Matador: This Colombian cartoonist, born in 1969, and whose real name is Julio Cesar Gonzalez drew his first cartoons for the periodic El Fuerte, before getting to draw for La Tarde, El Espectador, Portafolio, Soho and finally El Tiempo, the best-selling journal in Colombia. He his nationally known for his criticism through his comics, especially towards former president and actual senator Alvaro Uribe Velez and his right- wing party, el Centro Democratico, represented by Ivan Duque Marquez in the current presidential election in Colombia. Due to a growing number of death threats, he decided to suspend his activity on social medias two weeks ago (but he will continue to get his work published inside El Tiempo).
Cartoons from Charlie Hebdo
This is the translated front page of the magazine a week after the 2015 terrorist attack, Prophet with an ironically shaped head.
This cover from August 2017 refers to the terrorist attack in Barcelona few days before. It says “Islam, religion of peace...for the eternity”
Cartoons from Matador (Colombia)
This comic followed the previous one by hitting even harder the attackers of Matador.
Supporters and attackers of Charlie & Matador
Despite being a target for a long time, the Charlie Hebdo illustrators continue to provide the magazine sensitive drawings, even after having to endure a terrorist attack. Many staff members of the redaction do have a personal 24/7 police escort assigned to them (one of the 2015 attack victim was even a policeman assigned to the protection of the illustrator Charb). Despite having the public opinion being them due to this awful event, most believe that the journal often goes too far. Pope Francis even took position regarding Charlie Hebdo and said “Freedom of speech is a fundamental right, but should not insult other’s beliefs”. The front page of the “survivor edition” made a lot of debate internationally. This edition was censored in Egypt, Israel and Turkey, and led to violent manifestations toward French cultural site and French expatriated people in Pakistan, Niger, Senegal, Algeria, Tunisia, Mauritania, Mali, Sudan, Jordania, Iran, Afghanistan and Chechenia.
Concerning Matador, he is despised by the Uribists, also known as the followers of Alvaro Uribe and other followers of el Centro Democratico, as their leaders are often the targets of these cartoons, but on the other hand, most of the other political leaders support Matador, saying that he has the freedom of speech and should of course continue to work and publish what he wants to.