First Iraq graphic novel launched

6 November 2007 - 3:49pm
Press release

The book - Iraq: Operation Corporate Takeover - is launched with comic publisher Boychild Productions before a public event tonight during the London international comics festival at the Institute of Contemporary Arts. Guardian columnist Seumas Milne will chair a discussion between the novel's award-winning script writer, Sean Michael Wilson, and its illustrator, Lee O'Connor.

The launch comes as War on Want intensifies pressure on the British government to regulate UK companies operating in countries such as Iraq. In the book, Nazem, a young Iraqi man, returns to Basra after studying medicine in London, to find his country torn apart by war and the exploitation and conflict generated by foreign companies seeking to profit from the occupation.

Amid the daily violence suffered by Iraqis, multinational companies and the US and British governments are exploiting the country's weakness to secure long-term control over its huge oil reserves.

And private military and security firms are making a killing in Iraq, while remaining unaccountable for many human rights abuses and deaths caused by mercenary soldiers. As Nazem discovers the extent of the corporate takeover of Iraq, he decides to act.

Ruth Tanner, senior campaigns officer at War on Want, said: "Our new graphic novel allows us to get across the message that companies are profiting from conflict at the expense of the poor. The British government must heed that message with regulation to curb abuses by big business, especially in conflict zones such as Iraq."

Copies of the novel, price £5 (US$10), are available here, along with a short preview and a film trailer.



CONTACT: Paul Collins, War on Want media office (+44) (0)20 7549 0584 or (+44) (0)7983 550728


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