Today marks the 34th Day of the Imprisoned Writer, an event organised by PEN International to recognise writers who have been persecuted for exercising their right to freedom of expression. Writers, journalists and poets across the world are regularly harassed, incarcerated, tortured and murdered for doing what many of us take for granted.
Through campaigns, PEN centres and members advocate for the release and safety of these writers. The Day of the Imprisoned Writer commemorates writers who have been killed, and gives a voice to those who are unjustly imprisoned or under threat.
To show my support for PEN’s amazing work and the courageous writers who choose to speak out despite the great personal risk, this week I have been planting poetry by these poets:
Award-winning Eritrean poet, critic and editor-in-chief of the leading newspaper ዘመን (Zemen, meaning The Times), currently detained in the maximum security prison, Eiraeiro, north of Asmara.
Poet, journalist and social activist, imprisoned since 2007 in Kazakhstan.
Susana Chávez Castillo
Poet and women’s rights advocate, found murdered in the border town of Ciudad Juárez on 6 January 2011.
Writer and activist released from prison in Cameroon in April 2015, after almost three and a half years in prison.
Teacher and poet currently serving a 20-year prison sentence in Evin prison, Tehran.
To learn more about the Day of the Imprisoned Writer, visit: http://www.pen-international.org/
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