PEN America issued the following statement today about Reza Baraheni, the author, Iranian dissident and former president of PEN Canada, who died on March 24. 

PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel said: “PEN America joins the international PEN community in mourning the death of former PEN Canada president, author, and Iranian dissident Reza Baraheni. prolific poet and author, he wrote impassioned defenses of free speech and protection for minorities in Iran at great personal cost. Imprisoned and tortured by the governments of both the Shah and the Islamic Republic, he leaves a legacy of courage and defiance.”