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 PEN Melbourne

The Writers in Prison Committee of PEN International was set up in 1960 as a result of mounting concern about attempts to silence critical voices around the world. An office was set up at the PEN head office in London to gather information and to alert the PEN membership to take action. The WiPC is now staffed by a team of experts who monitor around 1,000 attacks on writers, journalists, editors, poets, publishers and others in any given year. These include long prison terms, harassment, threats, and murder.

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The most recent hearing for Witness K was held on Monday 29th March. The demonstration was addressed by Alicia Payne, MP for Canberra, Flavia Abduraman, (, and Susan Connelly. A fire truck with a grand display of “Drop the Prosecutions” was provided by Ian Fraser and Ian Melrose, design by Cate Adams. On the same day, there was a demonstration outside the Australian Consulate in Auckland. Hooray for our NZ friends! Thanks to Maire Leadbeater.  Click here for photos. On Wednesday 31 March …

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International PEN Melbourne Centre   MYANMAR   International PEN Melbourne Centre condemns the Myanmar Military Regime’s deadly use of force against its own citizens including poets and journalists since the coup of 1 February 2021. The Military junta has ramped up surveillance of opponents and arrests, including of journalists, writers, and creative artists; and increased violence against protesters. The junta has brought in legal measures and emergency powers to silence and intimidate and to justify its human rights abuses. Intentional …

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PEN Melbourne at the Human Rights Arts Film Festival Ai Weiwei:Yours Truly 1.15pm Sun 25 April ACMI Cinema Book your tickets here: Take Action Write to authorities urging China to release Yang Hengjun We encourage anyone with a love of writing and literature to join PEN Melbourne. We are an entirely voluntary and not-for-profit organisation and our members sustain and bring vitality to our work.

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Photo credit: Di Cousens I would like to acknowledge that we are gathering tonight on the stolen unceded land of the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation. I pay my respects to their Elders past, present and future and all Indigenous people gathered here tonight.  This land was taken by force, in a violent war. Every inch of Australia is unceded Aboriginal land.   These are not the sort of times I thought I would be living through in my …

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International PEN Melbourne Centre ULURU Statement from the Heart:   ACTION Support for a Voice to Parliament to be Enshrined in the Constitution The International PEN Melbourne Centre works on the lands of the the Boon Wurrung and Woi Wurrung peoples of the Kulin Nation and we recognise that the sovereignty of these lands has never been ceded. PEN Melbourne acknowledges that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have suffered historic and ongoing silencing since the colonisation of Australia beginning …

As a member of PEN Melbourne, you will receive a monthly Update with news about our activities and campaigns, and invitations to a program of events with renowned Australian and international writers and activists. The PEN Melbourne Journal is also produced twice a year and distributed free to members.

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