IFJ Backs Cartoonist in Row over Image in Anti-Islam Film

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today said the use of a cartoon depicting the prophet Mohammed in an anti-Islam film is an abuse of author’s rights that uses an image inappropriately and without proper permission.

“Using the cartoon in this way and without permission is an appalling violation of authors’ rights,” said Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary.

The IFJ is supporting its member the Danish Union of Journalists (DUJ) and cartoonist and union member Kurt Westergaard in their protest over the use of the drawing in the Dutch politician Geert Wilders’ film “Fitna.”

The DUJ says Westergaard had no intention of allowing his drawing to be used in the manner and context it is used in the film. The Danish union in cooperation with the IFJ’s Dutch affiliate, the Nederlandse Vereniging van Journalisten (NVJ), is preparing a legal case against the politician for his unauthorized use of the Danish drawing.

“The use of the drawing in Wilders' film constitutes a serious violation of Kurt Westergaard’s author’s rights. He has not and would never have authorized the use of his drawing except for serious and independent editorial purposes,” says Mogens Blicher Bjerregård, president of DUJ.

Click here to read the full statement from the Danish Union of Journalists.

For more information contact the IFJ at + 32 2 235 2207
The IFJ represents over 600,000 journalists in 120 countries worldwide