The five cases we present are emblematic of the type of threats and attacks writers and journalists around the world are often subjected to, for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of expression.
This year, on the 40th anniversary of the campaign, PEN is featuring the cases of Mohammed Al-Roken (UAE), Rahile Dawut (China – Xinjiang), Selahattin Demirtaş (Turkey), Maykel Osorbo (Cuba), and the collective case of 12 writers imprisoned since 2001 (Eritrea). Please take action with us on the following days:
- Maykel Osorbo – Monday 15th November
- Selahattin Demirtaş – Tuesday 16th November
- Rahile Dawut – Wednesday 17th November
- Collective case of 12 Eritrean writers – Thursday 18th November
- Mohammed Al-Roken – Friday 19th November
How does the Day of the Imprisoned Writer work?
Established in 1981 by PEN International’s Writers in Prison Committee, the Day of the Imprisoned Writer is an opportunity for the PEN’s movement to take action on behalf of selected writers and ensure that they and their families feel supported and not forgotten.
PEN Centres and members worldwide advocate for these cases, with activities ranging from letter-writing and panel discussions, to press conferences and publishing the work of imprisoned writers. PEN’s supporters engage in activities such as raising awareness of their situation and taking action on social media, or in the form of donations. Writers send solidarity letters to their colleagues in prison or under threat.
Read this years’ solidarity letters in support of our imprisoned writers:
- Roberto Saviano writes to Selahattin Demirtaş
- Philippe Sands writes to Rahile Dawut
- Ben Okri writes to 12 Eritrean writers imprisoned since 2001
- Yassin al-Haj Saleh writes to Mohammed Al-Roken
Read about Mohammed Al-Roken (UAE), Rahile Dawut (China – Xinjiang), Selahattin Demirtaş (Turkey), Maykel Osorbo (Cuba), and the collective case of 12 writers imprisoned since 2001 (Eritrea), and see how you can take action today.