(New York, NY) — A group of three members and employees of PEN Belarus were detained today while engaging in a peaceful protest in Minsk: secretary, poet, and translator Hanna Komar; project manager, poet, and translator Uladzimir Liankevich; and translator Siarzh Miadzvedzeu. Polina Sadovskaya, PEN America’s Eurasia program director, said the following:

“Hanna, Uladzimir, and Siarzh must be freed immediately. PEN America is outraged at the unjust detention of our colleagues, leaders of a venerated literary and human rights organization. We demand their immediate release so that they may return to their essential work promoting the written word and defending free expression at a time of crisis. Alexander Lukashenko is politically outnumbered and morally outflanked by the people of Belarus determined to express their free will. Efforts to silence political opponents through arrests, kidnappings and harassment are doomed to fail.”

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