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Roger Stone indicted on seven criminal charges, as special counsel Robert Mueller alleges that Stone sought stolen emails from WikiLeaks to damage Trump’s opponents in 2016 election. After her release from custody by the FBI, journalist and U.S. citizen Marzieh Hashemi says she was targeted for her work and jailed as a warning. Messaging platforms for Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram to merge to allow communication for users across platforms. Federal judge in Arkansas throws out lawsuit brought by newspaper challenging anti-boycott state law, finding no First Amendment violation. (See PEN America’s statement on the ruling.) Agnès Callamard, UN special rapporteur for extrajudicial, summary, or arbitrary executions, will lead an inquiry into the October killing of Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi Arabian consulate in Istanbul. -Nora Benavidez, Director of U.S. Free Expression Programs

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


Mueller Indicts Roger Stone, Says He Was Coordinating with Trump Officials about Wikileaks’ Stolen Emails
Roger Stone has been indicted by a grand jury on charges brought by special counsel Robert Mueller, who alleges that the longtime Donald Trump associate sought stolen emails from WikiLeaks that could damage Trump’s opponents while in coordination with senior Trump campaign officials.

Iranian Anchorwoman Says the U.S. Jailed Her as a Warning
Marzieh Hashemi, a prominent American-born anchorwoman for Iran’s state television, said she believes the U.S. government jailed her because of her work as journalist and her beliefs, and as a warning to her to “watch your step.”

Zuckerberg Plans to Integrate WhatsApp, Instagram, and Facebook Messenger
Mark Zuckerberg plans to integrate the social network’s messaging services, asserting his control over the company’s sprawling divisions at a time when its business has been battered by scandals.

Federal Judge Rejects Lawsuit Challenging Arkansas Anti-BDS Law
A federal judge in Arkansas has thrown out a challenge to the state’s anti-Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions law, rejecting the argument that commercial boycotts qualify as protected speech.

Trapped in a Hoax: Survivors of Conspiracy Theories Speak out
Amid the explosive growth of conspiracy theories, one aspect has been underappreciated: the human cost. What is the toll paid by those caught up in these falsehoods? And how are they fighting back?


UN Executions Expert to Visit Turkey to Lead Khashoggi Inquiry *PEN Case List: Learn more
A UN expert on executions is to travel to Turkey next week to lead an “independent international inquiry” into the death of Jamal Khashoggi, the Saudi Arabian journalist killed in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul in October.

British MPs Increase Pressure on Saudi Government to Allow Access to Detained Women Activists
A group of cross-party British MPs and international lawyers have given the government of Saudi Arabia until the end of the month to grant access to women activists who are alleged to have suffered torture in prison.

Australian Democracy Activist Chau Van Kham ‘Detained’ in Vietnam
Just days after Australian blogger and author Yang Hengjun was detained in China, Australian citizen Chau Van Kham, a prominent Vietnamese-Australian pro-democracy activist, is said to have been detained by Vietnamese authorities.

‘El Chapo’s’ Sons Killed Mexican Journalist: Trial Witness
Sons of accused Mexican drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman murdered a journalist well known for his coverage of drug cartels, a former associate testified.

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