Writers At Risk

PEN’s bedrock work is long-term advocacy on behalf of individual writers who are being persecuted because of their work. This page features several of our highest priority cases. With the help of our members and supporters, we are carrying out campaigns to win their release and ensure they are safe and can write and publish freely.

Take a moment to share information about these writers and take action on their behalf.

This is only a small sampling of writers under threat around the world. Click here for the most recent PEN International case list.


Ali Al-Domaini | Status: Released | Saudi Arabia

Ali Al-Domaini is a poet and writer whose publications include three collections of poetry and one novel in Arabic. As a political activist, he has campaigned for a move… More

Stanislav Dmitrievsky | Status: Under Threat | Russia

Stanislav Dmitrievsky, a human rights advocate, is continually under threat for his work promoting human rights in Chechnya. More

Zouhair Yahyaoui | Status: Deceased | Tunisia

The Freedom to Write Committee mourns the passing of Zouhair Yahyaoui. According to his family, he died of a heart attack on Sunday, March 13, 2005. He was arrested… More

Shi Tao | Status: Released | China

Shi Tao is a journalist, poet, and member of the Independent Chinese PEN Center serving a 10-year sentence for “illegally divulging state secrets abroad" after he forwarded a Propaganda… More

Aung Than & Zeya Aung | Status: Released | Myanmar

Aung Than is a member of the National League for Democracy (NLD) and Zeya Aung is a student at Pegu University. Together they wrote a book of poems called… More

Mamadali Mahmudov | Status: Released | Uzbekistan

Mamadali Mahmudov is a renowned Uzbek writer and opposition activist who was released in 2013 after serving a 14-year sentence on charges related to a series of explosions in… More

Aung Myint | Status: Released | Myanmar

Aung Myint (also known as Phya Pon Ni Loan Oo) is a journalist, poet, and head of the information department of the National League for Democracy (NLD). Aung started… More

Zaw Thet Htwe | Status: Released | Myanmar

Zaw Thet Htwe, respected journalist and political advocate, worked as an editor and journalist at First Eleven Sports News, a popular sports journal Burma. After Cyclone Nargis struck on… More

Muhammad Bekjanov | Status: Released | Uzbekistan

A prominent Uzbek journalist in the period immediately following the collapse of the Soviet Union, Muhammad Bekjanov came to be recognized as a leading voice in the struggle for… More

Zarganar | Status: Released | Myanmar

Maung Thura (“Zarganar”) is a poet, opposition activist, and leading comedian in Burma. He began a career in political activism through comedy while completing his undergraduate degree. As a… More

Page 14 of 16« First...1213141516