This post originally appeared on the website of PEN International. 
10 December 2016
Dear President Xi Jinping, 
On World Human Rights Day, our PEN International community of writers, readers, activists and publishers condemn the Chinese authorities’ sustained and increasing attack on free expression and call for an immediate end to China’s worsening crackdown on fundamental human rights.
We cannot stand by as more and more of our friends and colleagues are silenced. Where is the voice of Ilham Tohti, Uyghur scholar and PEN member, currently serving a life sentence, when his life’s work has been about creating peace and dialogue in China? Where is the voice of veteran journalist Gao Yu, who spent close to two years in prison and is now under house arrest? Where is the voice of publisher Gui Minhai, who disappeared from his holiday home in Thailand and is now being held incommunicado?  Where is the voice of Nobel Peace Laureate and former president of the Independent Chinese PEN Centre, Liu Xiaobo serving an 11-year prison sentence and the voice of his wife, the poet Liu Xia, who has been under house arrest for over six years without even having been accused of a crime?
These writers represent the many critical voices across China currently being silenced. Like the imprisoned and persecuted members of the Independent Chinese PEN Centre: Yang Tongyan, Zhu Yufu, Lü Gengsong, Chen Shuqing, Hu Shigen, Qin Yongmin, Liu Yanli and Liu Feiyue, (and honorary members) Zhang Haitao, Sun Feng, Lu Yuyu, Li Tingyu, Huang Qi and Su Changlan. The enforced silence of these friends and colleagues is deafening, and the disappearance of their voices has left a world worse off for this egregious injustice and loss.
Today we call for their words to reverberate across the globe as we commit to fighting for their freedom until China heeds our call. On days like today we have to reaffirm our refusal not to be complicit in their silence. We have to use our own words to give power to theirs.
China and the rest of the world can only be enriched by these opinions and voices. We therefore urge the Chinese authorities to release the writers, journalists, and activists who are languishing in jail or kept under house arrest for the crime of speaking freely and expressing their opinions.
We urge them to uphold freedom of expression and all human rights.
Abraham Zere, PEN Eritrea
William Nygaard, PEN Norway
Adriaan van Dis                
Ah Phyu Yaung Shwe     
Aleid Truijens   
Alejandro Sánchez-Aizcorbe, Peruvian PEN
Alexander McCall Smith, PEN Writers Circle
Anders Heger, PEN International
Andrew Solomon, PEN America
Anna Nasiłowska, Polish PEN
Annika Thor, Swedish PEN
Anotnio Della Rocca, PEN Trieste
Baoqiang Sun    
Burhan Sönmez, PEN Writers Circle
Carles Torner, PEN International
Carme Arenas, PEN Catala
Catherine Vuylsteke      
Chaw Ei Mahn  
Chimamanda Adichie    
Chit Kyi Aye       
Christine Otten                
Chu Cai 
Colm Toibin, PEN Writers Circle
De Novo              
Depu He              
Dr. Mirror (Taung-gyi)
Elif Shafak, PEN Writers Circle    
Eugene Schoulgin, PEN International
Feng Hu               
Fiona Graham, Scottish PEN
Frank Mackay Anim-Appiah, PEN Ghana
Ghareeb Asqalani           
Gloria Guardia, PEN International
Go Go Mawlamyaing     
Guozhen Xiao   
Hakan Günday  
Han Zaw              
Hanan Al Shaykh, PEN Writers Circle
Hanan Awwad, PEN Palestine
Htar Oak Thon   
Iman Humaydan, PEN Lebanon
Isabella Allende               
Jennifer Clement, PEN International
Jianguo Zha        
Jianhong Li         
Jianhua Li            
Jianzhen Qi
Jiro Asada, Japan PEN
JM Coetzee        
Joanne Leedom-Ackermon, PEN International
Judyth Hill, PEN San Miguel
July Moe             
Juraj Šebesta, Slovak PEN
Khin Aung Aye  
Khin Mg Oo        
Khin Moe Shwe                
Khin Mya Zin     
Kyar Phyu New 
Kyaw Zin Ko Ko 
Kyawt Darli Lin  
Lebao Wu           
Let Yar Tun
Liyong Sun          
Lucina Kathmann, PEN International
Ma Thida, PEN International
Magali Tercero, PEN Mexico
Magda Carneci, PEN Romania
Manon Uphoff  
Margaret Atwood, PEN Writers Circle
Margie Orford, PEN South Africa
May Zun Aye     
Mi Chan Wai
Michelle Franke, PEN Centre USA
Mingmin Lin      
Mircea Cartarescu           
Mohamed Sheriff, PEN International
Moris Farhi, PEN International
Mya Thway Ni   
Myat Lwin Lwin Aung    
Myat Su Lwin     
Myay Hmone Lwin          
Myo Myint Nyein, PEN Myanmar
Nan Kyar Phyu  
Nedzad Ibrahimovic, PEN Bosnia-Herzegovina
Neil Gaiman
Nguyên Hoàng Bao Viêt, PEN Suisse Romand      
Ngwe Kyel Sin   
Nyi Pu Lay           
Per Øhrgaard, Danish PEN
Per Wästberg, PEN International
Ping Hu                
Randy Boyagoda, PEN Canada
Regula Venske, PEN Germany
Renate Dorrestein          
Salil Tripathi, PEN International
Salman Rushdie, PEN Writers Circle
Samay Hamed, Afghan PEN
Saw Wai              
Shiying Zhao      
Shwe Eain Si May            
Shwe Naung Yoe
Sirpa Kähkönen, Finnish PEN
Sjón, Icelandic PEN
Sofi Oksanen, PEN Writers Circle
Suu Mie Aung   
Suzanne Nossel, PEN America
Syeda Aireen Jaman, PEN Bangladesh
Thet Wai Hnin (Aung Lan)
Tienchi Liao, Independent Chinese PEN Centre
Tung Van Vu, Vietnamese Abroad PEN Centre
Vida Ognjenovic, PEN Serbia
Vonne van der Meer, PEN Netherlands
Waheed Warasta, PEN Afghanistan
Wenxiu Lin         
Willem Jan Otten
Yann Martel, PEN International
Ye Shan                
Yeliang Xia         
Yongmei Cai      
Yrsa Sigurdardóttir          
Yu Zhang             
Zeynep Oral, PEN Turkey
Zhao Chen