Free Expression Daily Digest: Tuesday, October 4
Jason Rezaian, Washington Post reporter, sues Iran over imprisonment
The paper’s former bureau chief in Tehran whose 544-day imprisonment in Iran during the nuclear negotiations aggravated tense relations with the U.S., filed a federal lawsuit Monday against the Iranian government, accusing it of hostage-taking, torture and terrorism.
THE NEW YORK TIMES
Ethiopia arrests blogger critical of government
Ethiopian police have arrested a blogger, Seyoume Teshome, who criticized the government’s handling of the ongoing protests in the Oromia and Amhara regions. The arrest came a day before a stampede broke out amid protests in Oromia, leading to the deaths of 55 people.
THE WASHINGTON POST
Retrial for journalist gets underway in Kyrgyzstan
A court in Kyrgyzstan has begun a retrial for Azimzhan Askarov, an ethnic Uzbek journalist jailed for life for stirring up ethnic hatred in a case which has drawn international criticism.
Turkish police raid TV station over “terrorist propaganda,” cut broadcast
Turkish police raided the offices of broadcaster IMC TV and cut its transmission on Tuesday, a Reuters witness said, as dozens of journalists and employees stood inside the TV studios and clapped in protest at the halt of the broadcast.
Macedonian journalist continues hunger strike
Macedonian journalist Zoran Božinovski, who is awaiting trial on espionage charges and has been held in detention for over five months, has been on hunger strike since September 14. Božinovski runs a tabloid-style web portal Burevesnik.org, famous for publishing leaked information that implicated members of the Macedonian political elite in a variety of misdeeds.
Australians arrested in Malaysia after stripping to briefs at Grand Prix
Nine men, all in their 20s, were arrested on Sunday after celebrating an Australian driver’s victory at the Malaysian Grand Prix by shedding their clothes to reveal the flag-themed “budgie smugglers,” as Australians call tight swimwear, according to news reports. The men would be investigated on suspicion of intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of the peace, an offense that holds two years prison time.
THE NEW YORK TIMES
Op-Ed: South Dakota’s Measure 22 escalates war on free speech
This November, South Dakota will vote on Initiated Measure 22, a ballot measure that—if passed—would require South Dakotans giving money to any cause deemed “political speech” to report their spending to the state government. This is a full-on assault on the First Amendment cloaked in the guise of transparency.
Op-Ed: UK government acted against a journalist on behalf of Syria
It is a disgrace that border agency officials thought it necessary to confiscate Zaina Erhaim’s passport at the request of Bashar al-Assad’s regime.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org