Why have free speech when it creates so much noise?
"It is said that freedom of speech is not just a human right, but the fundamental human right. Without this right all other rights are in jeopardy. But why should we have freedom of speech when it continually insults, hurts and stirs up groups in society", asked Norwegian PEN boardmember Peter Normann Waage during the "Courage"-conference in Bergen, October 23rd.
Pussy Riot sentence: Norwegian singer cancelles concert in Russian embassy
Well known Norwegian singer Per Vollestad yesterday cancelled a planned engagement to sing Edvard Grieg´s songs at the Russian embassy in Oslo.  "The sentence and the silencing of free expression cannot be tolerated", Vollestad told Norwegian press
Presenting ICORN on Youtube
The International Cities of Refuge Network - ICORN - presents itself, its important work and some of its writers in a seven-minutes documentary, available on Youtube. 
May 3: World Press Freedom Day
At a WPFD-event in Oslo, the Fritt Ord Foundation, the Norwegian Union of Journalists, Norwegian PEN, the Norwegian Press Association, the Association of Norwegian Editors, IPI Norway and the Norwegian National Commission for UNESCO take a closer look at working conditions for female journalists and "media, government and transparency after the terrorist attack on 22 July."
World Book Day April 23.: Read a text for Syria
The international literature festival Berlin calls upon intellectuals, writers, artists, cultural institutions, schools, universities, radio and TV stations, to participate in a global reading on 23 April 2012, the World Book Day. Excerpts from the diary of the Syrian author Samar Yazbek will be read – also in front of Syrian embassies. Yazbek has documented in her diary the events in Syria since the beginning of the rebellion last year. She is also the author of the attached appeal.
Turkey: Ragıp Zarakolu released pending trial
Norwegian PEN and PEN centers all over the world today (April 10th) welcomed the news that Ragip Zarakolu, one of Turkey's preeminent free expression champions, was among 15 freed from prison in Turkey pending trial.  PEN cautioned, however, that Zarakolu still faces trial on charges that carry a heavy prison sentence and that scores of other writers and intellectuals remain imprisoned.
Watch video-clips from the conference "Action on Belarus" on this website
You can now watch videos from the successful and well attended "Action on Belarus" at the House of Literature in Oslo on 22. March on this website,
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Writers in Prison
  • Khadija Ismailova
  • Can Dundar
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