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Last Updated: Wednesday March 09 2005 17:01 GMT

Comic book heroes for Middle East

AK Comics characters - (copyright AK Comics)
You might have heard of Superman, Batman and Spider-Man but what about Aya, Zein, Jalila and Rakan?

They're all characters in a series of comic books that have been designed to appeal to fans in the Middle East.

The comics are published by a company in Egypt called AK Comics, and are written in both English and Arabic.

But although the characters are in the Middle East, they're just like the superheroes you might know, with good beating evil after a tough struggle.

The characters in Middle East Heroes comics are tasked with keeping the region safe from evil following 55 years of war.

Rakan The Lone Warrior Comic - (copyright AK Comics)
The heroes look just like any other characters
Some of the plots in the comics seem similar to real world events in the Middle East, but the managing editor Marwan Nashar said it's hard not to be inspired by what's going on.

He added that people in the Middle East are keen on the new comics with many of them telling him "it's about time".

"I believe that having superheroes, or superhuman beings, is an essential need - just like God," Mr Nashar told the BBC.

"We need to believe in a higher being that will be there for help, and can affect change on his own. There is a global and human need for that."

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