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 pen.webintern@gmail.com

Many in Hong Kong fear Beijing’s reach after publishers disappear
For many of the 7.2 million people living in Hong Kong, the disappearances of Lee Bo and four of his colleagues have fueled a profound fear by calling into question the legal guarantee that people would be shielded from Beijing’s reach under an arrangement known as one country, two systems. To legal scholars and human rights groups, Mr. Lee’s case is the latest example of the ever-lengthening arm of the Chinese state. THE NEW YORK TIMES

Journalists harassed, jailed in run-up to Iranian elections
With the arrest of a journalist and the closure of a pro-reform daily newspaper in the past few days, and the interrogation of other journalists, Iranian authorities seem to be trying to intimidate the media as part of a preventive crackdown two months ahead of parliamentary elections. Four journalists have been held since their arrests in early November. REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS

NGOs fume after Malaysia kicks out Indonesian activist
Indonesian NGOs have condemned the Malaysian government’s decision to deport human rights activist Mugiyanto Sipin as he attempted to enter the country to attend an event organized by Bersih 2.0, the Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections. In a joint statement, the NGOs denounced the Malaysian government for what they deemed an attack on freedom of movement and freedom of thought, speech, and expression. THE JAKARTA POST

Hungarian journalist slammed for ‘seven types of blackface’
A Hungarian human rights lawyer and journalist who published a controversial series of portraits transposing her own face onto those of African women has been forced to remove her work after sparking widespread anger online. The photographs were taken down today after a series of satirical articles and angry blogs drew attention to the work described as offensive, patronizing, and narcissistic. THE GUARDIAN

African National Congress bans journalist from event
A tweet by a South African journalist calling attendees of the African National Congress’s 104th birthday event ‘pantypreneurs and tenderprenders’ resulted in a ban by the party, and a statement that it would withdraw the reporter’s accreditation despite her apology. The South African National Editors Forum said the ANC went too far in banning Carin Du Plessis, and that it should ‘rise above such things, and actually invite people that it disagrees with, including people who offend it.’ E-NEWS CHANNEL AFRICA

Israeli journalist, Palestinian pastor win Swedish rights prize
Israeli journalist Gideon Levy and Palestinian pastor Mitri Raheb on Thursday won the 2015 Olof Palme human rights prize for their ‘fight against occupation and violence’, the jury said. Levy, a journalist at the left-leaning Israeli daily Haaretz, and Raheb, a preacher and pastor, were honored for their ‘courageous and indefatigable fight against occupation and violence, and for a future Middle East characterized by peaceful coexistence and equality for all.’ AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE