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U.S. immigration lawyers and journalists denied entry into Mexico, possibly due to their advocacy and media coverage of the conflict at the Mexican border. (See PEN America’s statement.) District court judge in Florida rules that a ban on gay conversion therapy violates the First Amendment. Special Rapporteur and human rights expert will listen to the audio recordings of the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi as part of the independent investigation. Young adult author Amélie Wen Zhao pulls the release of her debut novel after early review readers object to its ‘racist’ depiction of slavery. -Nora Benavidez, Director of U.S. Free Expression Programs

The most pressing threats and notable goings-on in free expression today


Immigrant Rights Attorneys and Journalists Denied Entry into Mexico
Two U.S. immigrant rights attorneys and two journalists who have worked closely with members of a migrant caravan in Tijuana said they had been denied entry into Mexico in recent days after their passports were flagged with alerts by an unknown government.

Judge Says Tampa Conversion Therapy Ban Violates First Amendment Free-Speech Rights
A federal magistrate judge this week recommended that a ban on conversion therapy in Tampa be partially blocked, arguing it violates therapists’ free-speech rights under the First Amendment.

Y.A. Author Pulls Her Debut After Pre-Publication Accusations of Racism
The debate over Amélie Wen Zhao’s novel echoes previous scandals that have erupted in recent years over representation in children’s and young adult books, as publishers have had to delay, cancel, and even withdraw and pulp books that became lightning rods for online criticism.

The AP Is Using Data Journalism to Help Strengthen Local Newsrooms
The AP shared the results of a project it started to get localized data to local newsrooms and help journalists make the best use of it. In 2018, the AP saw 1,400 downloads from 300 local newsrooms on its data.world platform.


Official: UN Team to Listen to Khashoggi Murder Audio *PEN Case List: Learn More
An advisor to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says a United Nations human rights expert will listen to the audio recordings of the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi as part of an investigation.

Myanmar’s Nobel Laureate Aung San Suu Kyi Could Release 2 Jailed Journalists. She Has Not.
The case underscores how Suu Kyi—once exalted as a champion of human rights—has tied her reputation to hard-line elements within her country who have sought to silence critics and others seeking accountability.

Indonesia Seeks to Ban Negative ‘Foreign’ Influences on Music
Among the most contentious aspects of the draft bill is Article 5, which outlaws “negative foreign influences” as well as blasphemous or pornographic content, punishable by imprisonment or a fine.

Iraqi Novelist Gunned down in Karbala
Alaa Mashzoub was on his way home when he was shot multiple times, police said. It was unclear what the motive was and no group has claimed responsibility. Mashzoub was active in local Karbala civil society.

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