Statement of the Writers for Peace Committee of International PEN Concerning the Tragic Events of May 31, 2010


The Writers for Peace Committee follows the Lugano Declaration in condemning individual terrorism as well as State terrorism; we declare that those who resort to violence, even for a good cause, „annul  the missions to which they are dedicated and lose all claims to legitimacy” (quoted from the Statement of the 50th Congress of  International PEN in Lugano, Switzerland, May 1987).


We declare that:


  1. Nothing justifies the violence and murders that the army of the     State of Israel have perpetrated against the people on the ships that brought humanitarian aid to Gaza.  The use of firearms was entirely out of proportion and unsuitable as a response to the resistance put up by the people on board.  We strongly condemn these murders and regret the deaths.

  2.  We protest against the grave violation of the right to freedom of expression of the journalists on board.

  3.  We demand that the government of the State of Israel agree that an international committee investigate and throw light on the events and establish responsibility.

  4. To prevent the recurrence of such events, we demand that the State of Israel and the Palestinian Authority accept the international monitoring of all ships so that the blockade can be lifted.

  5. We ask that the two States, that of Israel which is already in existence, and that of the people of Palestine which has yet to be established as soon as possible, recognise one another.  We believe that the only way to achieve the peaceful coexistence of the two States is through dialogue.

  6. It is the role of the international community through its institutions to make this political dialogue possible.  It must draw on the resources of the respective cultures, particularly the literary ones, of the two peoples whose writers are witnesses to peace and are committed to achieving it.



June 14, 2010


Dr. Edvard Kovač

President of the Writers for Peace Committee of International PEN


Eugene Schoulgin

Secretary General of International PEN

PEN: utred behandlingen av journalister på den bordade Gaza-konvojen

Två veckor har nu gått sedan den israeliska arméns bordning av den internationella konvojen med förnödenheter till det avspärrade Gaza. PEN oroas särskilt av den brist på respekt för pressfriheten och journalisters arbetsvillkor som militären visade. Enligt uppgifter från Reportrar utan gränser fängslades minst sexton journalister, från länder som Bulgarien, Tyskland och Australien. Andra fick sin utrustning och sitt material belagtaget.

- Alltfler journalister stupar, skadas eller fängslas i krig.  Det är en oroande trend som blir allt värre. Men man bör påminna sig om att detta skedde på internationellt vatten och inte i någon krigszon, säger Ola Larsmo, ordförande i Svenska PEN.

PEN ställer sig alltså bakom de krav på en oberoende utredning av behandlingen av journalisterna ombord som framförts av Reportrar utan Gränser.


Läs Internationella PENs deklaration om behandlingen av journalister ombord på Gaza-konvojen här.

Reportrar utan Gränsers uttalande kan läsas här.