Kategoriarkiv: Protestbrev

2020 Aserbajdsjan: Elchin Mammad

We call on the Azerbaijani authorities to free reporter and lawyer Elchin Mammad.
Elchin Mammad. Photo: Elchin Mammad’s Facebook page.

President of Azerbaijan
Ilham Aliyev

19 Istiqlaliyyat Street
Baku AZ1066

PEN International and The Norwegian Writers in Prison Committee hereby urge Azerbaijani authorities to immediately and unconditionally release reporter and lawyer Elchin Mammad.

Human rights lawyer and journalist Mammad was arrested in his home on March 30th, only days after he published a critical report on the human rights’ situation in Azerbaijan. He was arrested on alleged charges of jewellery theft.

Elchin Mammad has faced harassment and intimidation by the authorities several times in the past. This prosecution fits a pattern of targeting critical voices with politically motivated arrests on spurious charges. We believe that Mammad’s recent arrest and detention is politically motivated. We worry for his situation and his health in regards to imprisonment during the covid-19 outbreak.

We therefore ask that you immediately release Elchin Mammad.

We furthermore call on Azerbaijani authorities to stop the persecution of journalists and human rights defenders, and to immediately release all those held in prison for having exercised their rights to freedom of opinion and expression.

Yours sincerely,

Mari Moen Holsve

Member of Writers in Prison Committee
Norwegian PEN

2020 Myanmar: Saw Wai

We call on Myanmar to drop all charges against the poet and PEN member Saw Wai immediately.
Drop all charges against Saw Wai.

U Win Myint
President of the Republic of the Union of Myanmar
President’s Office
Naypyitaw, Myanmar

Oslo, March 15th, 2020

President U Win Myint,

The Norwegian Writers in Prison Committee is deeply concerned by the ongoing prosecution of poet and PEN member, Saw Wai, who stands accused of defaming the military under Section 505(a) of the Penal Code, after speaking at an event in Kaw Thaung township, in the Tanintharyi region of Southwestern Myanmar. If convicted, he could face up to two years in prison. PEN International believes that Saw Wai is being targeted solely for the peaceful exercise of his right to freedom of expression and calls for the charges against him to be dropped.

I have myself met Saw Wai several times and he is an outstanding poet that Myanmar should be proud of. He has been important for the democratization of Myanmar together with NLD and should not be in prison but honored by the government.

Therefore, we are

  • Calling on the Myanmar authorities to drop the charges laid against Saw Wai immediately and unconditionally;
  • Calling for all laws that impose unlawful restrictions on the right to freedom of expression in Myanmar to be repealed or amended in line with international human rights standards;
  • Urging the immediate ratification of international human rights treaties to which Myanmar is not yet a party, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

Yours sincerely,

Jørgen Lorentzen
Member of Writers in Prison Committee
PEN Norway


The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Embassy of Myanmar in Norway