Persecuted Writers are Recognized

36 writers from 16 countries receive funds from the estates of Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett

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The Italian translator of The Satanic Verses, who was the victim of a knife attack last summer; a Peruvian journalist arrested during the recent coup; and numerous Burmese and Chinese writers imprisoned for their roles in their nations' pro-democracy movements are among the writers recognized this year by the Fund for Free Expression for their courage in the face of political persecution. In 1989, at the request of the estates of the American writers Lillian Hellman and Dashiell Hammett, the Fund for Free Expression set up, and continues to administer, a special fund for writers of fiction or non-fiction, anywhere in the world, who are in financial need as a result of political persecution. The grants are made annually by a five-member selection committee consisting of members of the Fund for Free Expression, one of the six divisions of Human Rights Watch. The third round of grants has recently been awarded -- a total of over $200,000 to 36 writers from 16 countries.

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