Free Expression Daily Digest: Thurs., April 14

PEN’s Free Expression Digest brings you a daily curated round-up of the most important free expression-related stories from around the web. Please send your feedback and suggestions to

US cites global governance crisis for declining human rights
In its annual human rights report released Wednesday, the State Department said governments in 2015 pushed back against groups that seek to empower ordinary people and fight corruption. The Obama administration is blaming a global crisis in governance as well as atrocities committed by non-state actors for a decline in human rights standards around the world. THE NEW YORK TIMES

Pu Zhiqiang: China rights lawyer has license revoked
One of China’s best known human rights lawyers, Pu Zhiqiang, has had his license to practice law revoked. The move follows the three-year suspended prison term he was given in December for online comments critical of Communist Party rule. BBC NEWS

Tiananmen Protest Museum says it’s being forced out of Hong Kong location
After two years the only museum dedicated to the 1989 Tiananmen protest movement is expected to close this year. The museum has been opposed by the building’s owners corporation, and the organizers faced a lawsuit that they have decided they do not want to continue spending money to fight.

Sisi stirs uproar on free speech after Egypt transfers islands
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi’s speech on Wednesday was meant to staunch uproar over the transfer of two islands to Saudi Arabia, but his reprimand to an audience member ignited a furor over free speech. REUTERS

Protests erupt in Macedonia as President halts wiretapping inquiry
The president of Macedonia abruptly ended a far-reaching criminal investigation into corruption and abuse of power throughout the government on Tuesday, plunging the tiny Balkan country into a political crisis.

Government pressure grows on Japanese press
For the Japanese media, meeting a deadline is becoming less important than towing the government line. The UN’s free speech investigator has even been called in to take account of the situation. DEUTSCHE WELLE