Free Expression Daily Digest: Tues., April 12

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

Comedian’s takedown of Turkish President tests free speech in Germany
German television comedian and satirist Jan Böhermann featured a recent segment on his show that he characterized as “abusive criticism” of President Erdogan. The Turkish Embassy lodged a formal request with the German foreign ministry to prosecute Mr. Böhmermann in accordance with German law on insulting foreign leaders. THE NEW YORK TIMES

Online curbs limit South Korea pre-election speech freedoms
South Korea’s cyberspace could flourish with rich discussions and debates ahead of the country’s general election this week. However, online comments or posts depicting a candidate in a negative light can be blocked with a few simple clicks thanks to a law allowing anyone to ask for them to be deleted for alleged libel or privacy violations. THE NEW YORK TIMES

Iranian blogger struggles for health and freedom after 18 days on hunger strike
Jailed anti-censorship activist and blogger Hossein Ronaghi Maleki is struggling for his health and freedom. He began a hunger strike March 26, to protest prison authorities’ refusal to give him proper medical care and demand his release. His health now is deteriorating rapidly. GLOBAL VOICES

Police officer sued over alleged threat to shoot journalist
A journalist in Pailin province yesterday filed a lawsuit against a local police officer for allegedly threatening to kill him if he published a story about a drunken shooting spree the officer went on last week.

Holy Bible on list of ‘challenged’ books at libraries
On the latest list of books most objected to at public schools and libraries, The Bible has been targeted nationwide, for the sex and violence it contains, but mostly for the legal issues it raises.