A Statement by the Jordan PEN Center


The Jordan PEN Center, with all its members,
condemns any attack or threat against any writer in
Jordan, and urges all official bodies to exercise their
duties within the legal framework to protect the
freedom of expression guaranteed by the Jordanian
Our colleague writer Zulaikha Abu Risheh, a
member of the Jordan PEN Center, together with
another writer, Basel Rafay'a, was subjected to
such threats on grounds of their views that were
considered "religious provocation". One of them
wrote, with support from another: "These two
writers must refrain from provoke people by
offending their religious faith.We had given such
advice to Nahedh Hattar". They also heaped a load
of offences and insults against the writers.
The two writers, Zulaikha Abu Risheh and Basel
Rafay'a, submitted a complaint through the official
electronic site "Fursan al-Urdun". The security
system took action and deleted these comments,
and the Zarka governor summoned the offenders
and the supervisors of the websites that publishes
the comments. The security department subjected
them to precautionary measure and they were
placed under surveillance and pledged not to

approach the writers anymore. It is expected that
they will be brought to trial.
Basel Rafay'a wrote on his electronic site: "It is a good
step that the security system has summoned the culprits
who provoke criminal and terrorist acts, and that they will
be brought to trial. It is important that the next step be
taken soon so that other miscreants should not continue to
think that they can threaten the lives of writers and
Writers in Jordan cannot express their views freely on
religious this applies to writers in all the Arab countries.
We, In the Jordan PEN Center call on the Jordanian
government to take further steps to protect writers from
any threats against their lives from extremists and
fanatics, as stipulated in the Jordanian constitution