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Defending Writers page blocks

Defending Writers

PEN's bedrock work is long-term advocacy on behalf of individual writers who are being persecuted because of their work. This page features several of our highest priority cases. With the help of our members and supporters, we are carrying out campaigns to win their release and ensure they are safe and can write and publish freely.

Take a moment to share information about these writers and take action on their behalf.

This is only a small sampling of writers under threat around the world. Click here for the most recent PEN International case list.

Saudi Arabia
Status: In Prison

Raif Badawi is a blogger from Saudi Arabia and the editor of the website... more »

Status: Convicted

Ilham Tohti, 44, is an ethnically Uyghur economist, writer, and public... more »

Status: House Arrest

Liu Xia is poet and artist, and was a founding member of the Independent... more »

Status: In Prison

Born on December 24, 1975, Mohammed al-Ajami, a Qatari citizen, is a poet... more »

Status: On Trial

Ayşe Berktay, a translator, cultural and women's rights activist, is... more »

Status: Released

Enoh Meyomesse, 57, is a writer, blogger, historian and political activist... more »

Status: In Prison

Eskinder Nega, a journalist and dissident blogger based in Addis Ababa who... more »

Status: Released

Lawyer and journalist Nasrin Sotoudeh was serving a six-year sentence in... more »

Status: In Prison

Liu Xiaobo, a renowned literary critic, writer, political activist, and... more »

Status: In Prison

A writer and member of the Independent Chinese PEN Center, Yang Tongyan is... more »