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

Azerbaijan: Leading human rights activist Leyla Yunus released from prison
Prominent Azerbaijan’s human rights activist Leyla Yunus has been released from custody due to her worsening health. The 59-year-old campaigner, who had been sentenced to 8.5 years in prison for fraud and tax evasion, had worked for the Peace and Democracy Institute in Baku with her husband, Arif, who had been arrested on the same charges. Both documented the treatment of political prisoners in Azerbaijan by authorities under the iron first of President Ilham Aliyev. INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS TIMES

South America hacker team targets dissidents, journalists
A shadowy cyber-espionage group that sent malware to the prosecutor whose mysterious death transfixed Argentina early this year has been hitting targets in left-leaning nations across South America, the Internet watchdog group Citizen Lab reported. Researchers said the hackers had a “keen and systematic interest in the political opposition and the independent press” in nations which have been run by allied left-wing governments, suggesting they may have operated on behalf of one or more of those governments. ASSOCIATED PRESS

Tired of lying, Kazakh state TV correspondent quits job
A London-based correspondent of Kazakhstan’s leading state television channel dropped a bombshell last week, saying she was quitting her job because she could not continue deceiving the Kazakh people. “I am, at last, leaving,” Bela Kudaibergenova wrote on Facebook on Dec. 3, announcing her departure from Khabar television and its online affiliate “I feel extremely happy now. I realized that I have a conscience. I can’t lie anymore.” RADIO FREE EUROPE/RADIO LIBERTY

Egyptian journalist sentenced to jail for defamation
The Giza Criminal Court sentenced a journalist at Sout Al-Oma newspaper to two years in prison and fined the publication’s editor EGP 20,000 for defamation against Minister of Justice Ahmed El-Zind. The Judges Club of Egypt filed a complaint against the journalists for allegedly defaming El-Zind in an article accusing him, during his presidency of the club, of receiving bribes from affiliated housing project companies. DAILY NEWS EGYPT

Pakistan journalist’s Twitter account reportedly hacked
The Twitter account of Pakistani journalist Hamid Mir was said to have been hacked, and his handle posted controversial tweets about the visit of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj Pakistan. The handle also tweeted pictures yesterday of his purported email account as well as banking details. Later, Mr. Mir tweeted, “I have been receiving a lot of twitter password reset requests recently. Someone trying to hack me”. NDTV

Cambodia: Human Rights Day marches gather steam despite gov’t obstacles
As International Human Rights Day, officially on Dec. 10, approaches, demonstrations across Cambodia are gaining momentum. Yesterday, rallies were held in five provinces despite threats of shutdowns from authorities. “We will march as planned. They try to abuse our human rights, whether it’s land grabbing, forced evictions or the lack of independence of the judiciary, but they can’t hide the truth.” said Ee Sarom, executive director of the Teang Tnaut Association. THE PHNOM PENH POST

Brother of imprisoned reporter accepts BU award on his behalf *PEN Case List
Because he’s imprisoned in Iran, Washington Post reporter Jason Rezaian could not be at Boston University Tuesday. So it was Ali Rezaian who attended an afternoon luncheon and accepted the 2015 Hugo Shong Reporting on Asia Award on behalf of his brother. Jason Rezaian has been behind bars in Iran for more than a year, charged by Iranian authorities with espionage. “It’s an honor to have this award bestowed on him, but he shouldn’t be in this situation,” Ali said at the ceremony. THE BOSTON GLOBE