A chilling moment as Putin gestures at journalists and ask Trump: “These are the ones that insulted you?” Chuckling in response reported, but nothing about the killings of journalists with impunity in Russia. President Trump breaks with tradition by not holding a news conference after the G-20 summit. He does tweet about joining with Moscow to form an “impenetrable Cyber Security unit” to prevent interference with U.S. elections, but then seems to retract the suggestion in a later tweet. Meanwhile, news organizations large and small ally to ask federal lawmakers for an antitrust exception so they can negotiate collectively with online platforms that offer up their content without supporting the costs of producing high-quality journalism. Arrests follow confrontations between the Ku Klux Klan and counter-protesters in a Virginia city that has decided to remove a statue of a Confederate general. And in China, jailed writer and Nobel Laureate Liu Xiaobo is reported in worsening condition after being hospitalized but not allowed to seek medical care where he chooses. See PEN America’s statement here.

-Dru Menaker, Chief Operating Officer


Putin Appears to Joke With Trump About Reporters in Front of Them
President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin shared a laugh at the expense of journalists covering the G-20 summit in Germany. Putin gestured to reporters exiting after the press was asked to leave the room, and reportedly asked Trump, “These are the ones who insulted you?” Trump chuckled in response.

No Trump Press Conference at G20
While the heads of state of at least a half dozen nations took reporters’ questions at the conclusion of the G20 meeting on Saturday, Trump did not. The president’s unwillingness to take questions from reporters is part of an undeniable pattern during his first six months in office.

Trump’s Cyber Tweets Cause Dismay, Confusion
President Donald Trump floated, then seemingly disavowed, a deal for greater cybersecurity cooperation with Russia—an idea that drew dismay and mockery from lawmakers of both parties, and which cyber analysts warned could make the U.S. less secure.

Newspapers Seek Antitrust Exemption to Band Together in Fight Against Google and Facebook
With ad revenues falling, the News Media Alliance—which counts the Los Angeles’ Times parent company Tronc, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and scores of smaller newspapers among its members—is calling on federal lawmakers to grant the industry an exemption from antitrust rules to negotiate collectively with the technology giants.

Klan members rally against removal of General Lee statue in Virginia
A few dozen Ku Klux Klan members and supporters shouted “white power” at a rally on Saturday in Charlottesville, Virginia, where they protested against the removal of a statute of Confederate General Robert E. Lee. The group was outnumbered by hundreds of counter-protesters who waved signs denouncing racism.


Dying Dissident Liu Xiaobo Must Be Allowed to Travel, UK and EU Urge China *PEN Case List
Britain and the European Union have joined a growing chorus of voices calling for China to free the dying Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo. A spokesperson for the Chinese foreign ministry rejected the appeals. The hospital treating Liu said that the tumour had grown and his liver was bleeding.

Anonymous Website Identifying Russians Who Attended Alexey Navalny’s June 12 Anti-Corruption Protests
Thanks to an anonymous group using controversial identification software, anybody who showed up at Alexey Navalny’s June 12 demonstrations has to wonder if they’ve been added to a public registry. In an environment where students face expulsion and employees can lose their jobs for attending “illegal” political protests, being “outed” is no idle threat.

Spyware Sold to Mexican Government Targeted International Officials
A team of international investigators working to unravel one of the Mexico’s gravest human rights atrocities was targeted with sophisticated surveillance technology. The investigators say they were quickly met with stonewalling by the Mexican government and even a retaliatory criminal investigation.

Turkey’s Opposition Stages Massive Rally in a Show of Strength Against Erdogan
Turks came out in force in Istanbul on Sunday calling for an end to a state of emergency that has been in place since a failed coup in July 2016. Turkish President Erdogan targeted journalists for articles and tweets that he said “insulted the president,” and rights activists also soon found themselves on trial or in jail.

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