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PEN Perth 2023 AGM and guest speaker: Ma Thida in conversation
21 September @ 5:30 pm - 7:30 pmFree
PEN Perth’s 2023 AGM is open to members and non-members and is a free event.
The Chair, Krishna Sen, will report on PEN Perth activities from the previous year, and the coming year’s committee will be elected. Please consider volunteering your time and expertise this year!
The AGM will be followed by a conversation with Ma Thida who will discuss democracy and freedom of expression in Burma. The session will also be available via Zoom for those who cannot attend in person.
Ma Thida is a Burmese human rights activist, surgeon, writer, and former prisoner of conscience. In October 1994, she was arrested and sentenced to 20 years in Insein Prison on the charges of ‘endangering public peace, having contact with illegal organizations, and distributing unlawful literature’. In 1996, she was the recipient of that year’s PEN/Barbara Goldsmith Freedom to Write Award, but she was not released until 1999, after serving six years in harsh conditions. She was released on humanitarian grounds due in part to her declining health, international pressure, and advocacy on the part of human rights organizations like Amnesty International and the PEN network.
This free event is being held on the International Day of Peace this year. The UN General Assembly has declared 21 September as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, through observing 24 hours of non-violence and ceasefire. Never has our world needed peace more.
This year’s theme is Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the #GlobalGoals. It is a call to action that recognizes our individual and collective responsibility to foster peace. Fostering peace contributes to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals – achieving these goals will create a culture of peace for all.