Iranian Cartoonist Draws Politician, Gets 25 Lashes
Mahmoud Shokraiyeh will be whipped for poking fun at legislator
By Dustin Lushing,  Newser Staff
Posted May 9, 2012 6:11 PM CDT
   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – An Iranian cartoonist has been sentenced to 25 lashings for drawing a member of parliament wearing a soccer jersey, reports MSNBC's Cartoon Blog. Mahmoud Shokraiyeh illustrated a caricature of the politician as part of a news story involving the relocation of a soccer team to a different city. It could be the sign of a heightening of Iran's already strict censorship.

"Many have lost their lives over the years by simply making fun of some symbols or making jokes about the prophet and the Imams," writes Daryl Cagle. "(N)o one inside Iran dares draw an Ayatollah, and until a few days ago, it was totally OK to draw cartoons of non-cleric officials." Shokraiyeh is not imprisoned but is required to make an appointment to receive the lashings.