Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

Courage Day - The Day of the Imprisoned Writer

Monday November 12th 2007

Media release - For Immediate Use

Courage Day - The Day of the Imprisoned Writer

Every 15th of November throughout the world, PEN (the international writers' organisation which champions freedom of expression) holds events to mark the International Day of the Imprisoned Writer.

The New Zealand Society of Authors which incorporates PEN honours this event as Courage Day, named jointly after James Courage, a novelist and poet whose novel A way of love was banned because he dared to express homosexuality in his writing prior to the setting up of the Indecent Publications Tribunal in 1964, and his grandmother Sarah Courage whose book describing colonial life in New Zealand was burned by neighbours who resented comments she made about them.

This year we are commemorating the 42 writers who lost their lives since Courage Day 2006 as well as the 1000's of writers, editors, broadcasters and journalists worldwide whose lives are endangered for speaking out against repressive regimes and human rights injustices.

Three writers will feature in our Courage Day events - journalist Anna Politkovskaya, whose work won her the description of "Russia's lost moral consciousness" and whose murder in October 2006, made headlines worldwide. Turkish-Armenian writer Hrant Dink was shot dead in January 2007 outside his office, after being convicted of "insulting the Turkish identity" after writing about a mass murder committed ninety years ago. And, Nigerian writer Ken Saro-Wiwa, who was executed 10 years ago along with eight others for campaigning against the devastation of the Niger Delta by international oil companies.

PEN is also asking for letters of support for five writers imprisoned for expressing their views -

Cuba - Normando Hernández González - a journalist imprisoned under crackdown on dissidents in 2003 and since held under dire conditions;

Gambia - Fatou Jaw Manneh - a journalist on trial and facing a heavy sentence on charges of sedition for her articles criticising the Gambian president.

Iran - Yaghoub Yadali - a novelist given a one year sentence for his fictional characterisation of the ethnic minority of which he is himself a member;

Uzbekistan - Jamshid Karimov - a journalist who has covered human rights abuses, and wrote critical articles and who has been held in psychiatric detention for over a year.

Yemen - Abdel Karim Al-Khaiweni - former editor of the online publication Al-Shoura who has been under threat since June 2007 for his writings and continued harassment by the military.

-ENDS-

www.authors.org.nz

The NZ Society of Authors (PEN NZ Inc)
Principal representative for the professional interests of writers. Protecting basic rights to freedom of expression, working to improve income and conditions, promoting New Zealand writing and literary culture.
Branches: Northland, Auckland, Central Districts, Wellington, Top of the South, Canterbury and Otago/Southland

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Malaysia Exposing Our Dodgy Policies On China

Last week, we all owed a vote of thanks to Malaysian PM Mahathir Mohamad for breaking with protocol during his bilateral meeting in Singapore with New Zealand PM Jacinda Ardern. Reportedly, Mahathir used the photo opportunity phase of the meeting – which usually involves just an exchange of smiles and pleasantries before the media is sent out of the room – to launch into matters of genuine substance.

By doing so, Mahathir usefully exposed how New Zealand is trying to make a virtue out of sitting on the fence over the South China Sea dispute. More>>

 

Climate Change: Top Academics Call On Government To Take Action

One hundred and fifty academics and researchers from around Aotearoa, including Dame Anne Salmond, Emeriti Professors and several Fellows of the Royal Society, have signed a strongly-worded open letter to the Government demanding bold and urgent action to tackle climate change. More>>

ALSO:

Teacher Qualifications, Class Sizes: Ten Year Plan For Early Learning

“Moving towards 100 percent qualified teachers in early childhood education centres and improving adult:child ratios are among some of the key proposals for change put forward by the sector and experts in the new draft ten year strategic plan for early learning,” Chris Hipkins said. More>>

ALSO:

Teacher Strikes: Meeting, March And Rally In Wellington

Throughout the Wellington region the NZEI rolling strikes entered their final day Friday. Thousands of teachers met in Wellington, Kapiti, Porirua and the Wairarapa. More>>

ALSO:

14/11: Two Years’ Progress Since The Kaikoura Earthquake

Mayor John Leggett said it was a day for reflection, but also a time to recognise the work by many people to support progress towards recovery made across Marlborough since November 2016. More>>

ALSO:

Pike River: Mine Drift Re-Entry Plan To Proceed

“I’ve decided the Te Kāhui Whakamana Rua Tekau Mā Iwa - Pike River Recovery Agency, recommended course of action to enter the drift, using the existing access tunnel, is by far the safest option,” said Andrew Little. More>>

ALSO:

Appointments: New High Commissioner To Australia Announced

“Dame Annette King needs no introduction given her long running career as a parliamentarian where she has previously held a number senior Cabinet portfolios, including Justice, Police and Health. She also was Parliament’s longest serving female MP with 30 years’ service,” said Mr Peters. More>>

ALSO:

Two Years Since Kaikoura: Silvia Cartwright To Lead Inquiry Into EQC

“The inquiry will be the first of its kind under the Public Inquiries Act 2013 and will have all the powers of a Royal Commission, be independent of Government and make its report directly to the Governor-General. More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels