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From the Times of India we learn that some ‘culprits’ have been identified in the murder of five writers and free thinkers this year. This is progress, I suppose, except that it does not say the culprits have actually been arrested. I don’t claim to know anything about the situation in Bangladesh whatsoever, but I recently discovered I have a personal connection to Dhaka, albeit a tenuous one–a former classmate of mine is married to a well-known publisher there. Suddenly I feel like I have a vested interest in the matter. More vested than before, I mean. I continue to feel that when free speech is under attack there, it is under attack everywhere. So, I encourage the Bangladeshi authorities to continue their hunt for the rest of the murderers, and I also encourage them to do everything possible to protect freedom of expression.

If you want to help, PEN International has a centre in Bangladesh. Our mandate is the same there as it is everywhere: protect free speech at home and abroad.

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