Day of the Imprisoned Writer

Aung San Su Ski badge
Photo by yrstruly on the English PEN flickr stream

Needless to say, I’m delighted at the news that Aung San Suu Kyi has been released from house arrest.  Another English PEN honorary member released, as we mark another Day of the Imprisoned Writer.  The PEN case list still has hundreds of names on it, people around the world imprisoned or threatened because of what they have written.

Only today we hear news of a Palestinian man, put in prison by the Palestinian Authority for blaspheming on Facebook.  And Suu Kyi’s countryman, the poet Zarganar, still sits in a prison cell, for the ‘crime’ of organising a humanitarian aid project to help the victims of Cyclone Nargis.  Today we also heard that the Independent Chinese PEN Centre has presented Zarganar the Lui Xiaobo Courage to Write Award.

It is interesting that as the Nobel Peace Prize goes to one writer in prison (Xiaobo) then another Nobel laureate is released.  Perhaps there is some law of nature that says only one can be detained at any one time…

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