National Writing Day: send a letter to a writer at risk

This National Writing Day (26 June) we’re inviting supporters across the UK to show your support for writers at risk around the world. Please consider sparing a few minutes to send a letter, card or message of support to one of PEN’s current cases of concern.

This recent note from writer Nedim Türfent, currently imprisoned in Turkey, shows just how much they can mean:

Dear PEN Members, we would like to express our eternal gratitude for every act of solidarity that you have carried out so far or you plan to in the future. While some people try to stifle our pens with a pile of grave earth, we will continue to hold them and produce. We would like to remind you that when the taste of solidarity is still within the reach of our hands, we will continue to write our reports, stories, novels and poems, line by line, letter by letter.

If you can, please also share photos of any cards you send with us via and on social media with the hashtag #PENgreetings. Please also tag @englishpen on Twitter, @english_pen_1921 on Instagram and English PEN Writers at Risk on Facebook.



Journalist and human rights defender Narges Mohammadi is imprisoned in Iran’s Evin Prison. There are widespread concerns for her health after she was immediately returned to prison following emergency surgery in May. Read more.


Journalist Nedim Türfent is serving eight years in prison in Turkey on trumped-up terrorism charges following an unfair trial. He spends much of his time in prison writing poetry and letters to the outside world. Read more.


Ukrainian filmmaker and writer Oleg Sentsov is serving a 20-year prison sentence in Russia on trumped-up terrorism charges. In 2018, he was awarded the prestigious European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought. Read more.


Six years after being forcibly transferred to Manus Island, award-winning writer, film-maker and journalist Behrouz Boochani remains stranded on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea. Read more.

About Cat Lucas

Cat Lucas is English PEN's Writers at Risk Programme Manager

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