Free Qatari Poet Mohamed Ibn Al Ajami

Mohammed al-Ajami, a.k.a. Ibn al-DhibI signed the French version of this a couple days ago, but will also now sign the English version. Please do the same — there are indeed places in the world where you can get sentenced to life for a poem:

World’s Poets Seek to Free Poet Given Life Sentence

For Immediate Release, December 18, 2012

Michael Rothenberg of 100 Thousand Poets for Change
David Swanson of <>

Prominent poets from around the United States and the world have launched a campaign to free a Qatari poet who has been sentenced to life in prison for reciting a poem., 100 Thousand Poets for Change, and allied organizations will be sending their members this email:

A poet has been sentenced to life in prison for reciting a poem. <>



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Qatari poet Mohamed Ibn Al Ajami’s crime consisted of reciting a poem extolling the courage and values of the popular uprisings in Tunisia. For that he’s been sentenced to life in prison.

Please join with a remarkable list of prominent poets from around the world and urge the court in Qatar to reconsider. <>

Rather than making itself an instrument for cracking down on dissent, we believe that the Court should uphold Mohamed Ibn Al Ajami’s right to free speech. The poem he recited called for an end to intolerable conditions, a demand that for the past two years has been aired by millions throughout North Africa and the Arab world.

In this spirit, we poets and non-poets who perceive the need for worldwide change at the social, political and ecological level, call on the Court to review the appeal, stop siding with repression and lend its ear to the movements that have sprung up all over the world for dignity, social justice and freedom, virtues that poets all over the world are endeavoring to voice and deliver.

Please sign the petition <>  and forward this email widely to like-minded friends.

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