(New York, NY) — The free speech and literary organization PEN America today demanded the release of Booker-longlisted novelist Tsitsi Dangarembga, arrested this week in advance of planned anti-corruption protests. Summer Lopez, PEN America’s senior director of free expression programs, said the following:

“Dangarembga’s arrest is part of a ruthless ongoing crackdown by Zimbabwe’s authorities against journalists, activists, and others attempting to call out the government for its failures and corruption. Would that the regime cared as much about those issues as it does about silencing those who dare to raise their voices in dissent. We call on Zimbabwean authorities to immediately and unconditionally release Dangarembga and all those who have been detained unjustly in recent weeks, and to ensure the Zimbabwean people’s right to free expression and association.”