Poet Dareen Tatour – a Palestinian citizen of Israel – is currently standing trial on charges of ‘support for a terrorist organisation’ and several counts of incitement to violence in connection with her poetry and social media activity. She was arrested in a pre-dawn police raid on her home on 11 October 2015 and spent over three months in police detention and half a year in house arrest in forced exile before being allowed to continue her house arrest at home. Two years later, her trial continues and she remains under house arrest, the conditions of which continue to be strict and include the prevention of her movement outside of her home unless under the supervision of a licensed chaperone and a blanket ban on accessing the Internet or on publishing any of her works.
In October 2017, PEN International’s President, Jennifer Clement, and PEN’s Executive Director, Carles Torner, visited Tatour at her home in Reineh near Nazareth. This is Tatour’s message to the PEN membership:
As a detained poet, your support gave me a spark of hope that would never extinguish, and it confirmed that there is someone who works to protect the rights of the writer and the poet as a human being, and to ensure that the spark of creativity remains alight forever. Thank you PEN International. Thanks very much for visiting me, for your support, and standing by poets and writers who suffer and face imprisonment like myself solely for expressing their views through art.
PEN believes that Dareen Tatour is being targeted for her peaceful exercise of her right to free expression and continues to call for her immediate and unconditional release one year after campaigning for her on the Day of the Imprisoned Writer 2016.
For further background information, please visit the PEN International website.
Spread the word
Share details of Dareen Tatour’s case with friends and colleagues and social media. #ImprisonedWriter #FreeDareen
Write to the authorities
Please send appeals to the Israeli authorities:
- Urging them to release poet Dareen Tatour from house arrest immediately and unconditionally;
- Calling for all charges against Dareen Tatour to be dropped as she is being held solely for her peaceful exercise of her right to freedom of expression.
Minister of Justice
Ministry of Justice
29 Salah al-Din Street Jerusalem, 91010, Israel
Fax: +972 2 628 5438
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Salutation:
And copies to: Attorney General
Ministry of Justice
29 Salah al-Din Street Jerusalem 91010, Israel
Fax: +972 2 530 3367
Please copy your appeals to the Embassy of Israel in your country. A list of embassies can be found here: http://www.allembassies.com/israeli_embassies.htm
Please check with PEN International if sending letters after 15 November 2017
PEN members are encouraged to:
- Publish articles and opinion pieces in your national or local press highlighting Dareen Tatour’s case;
- Organise public events, press conferences, poetry readings or demonstrations;
- Join the Translation and Linguistic Rights Committee in translating her poetry, available in the original Arabic here and other languages here;
- If you have not already done so, consider signing this petition for Tatour: https://jewishvoiceforpeace.org/dareen/;