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naji al-ali

naji al-ali (c1937–1987) was born in the palestinian village of ash-shajara, between nazareth and tiberias. in 1948, ash-shajara was one of the 480 villages destroyed in what is known as the “nakba.” al-ali, 11 years of age at the time, was expelled from palestine along with his family. naji al-ali grew up in the ein al-hilweh refugee camp in southern lebanon, where his gift for drawing was discovered by the palestinian writer ghassan kanafani in the late 1950s. early the following decade he left for kuwait, embarking on a thirty-year career that would see his cartoons published daily in newspapers from cairo and beirut to paris and london. al-ali worked for, among others, the lebanese newspaper as-safir and the independent kuwaiti daily al-qabas. constantly harassed and censored, naji al-ali moved to london, where he was shot and killed in chelsea on july 22, 1987. naji al-ali was posthumously awarded the golden pen award of the international federation of newspaper publishers (fiej).

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