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QUOTES ON WAR - 20 Ukrainian Writers Reflect on the War

Tuesday 24 May 2022 - 9:30am


24 May 2022 – Today marks three months since Russia launched a full-scale military invasion of Ukraine. Thousands of civilians have been killed or injured in attacks by Russian forces who stand accused of war crimes, including summary executions, torture, and rape. At least seven journalists have lost their lives while covering the war. Over 14 million people have been displaced, with six million having fled Ukraine to other countries. The PEN Community utterly condemns the violence unleashed by Russian forces against Ukraine and urgently calls for an end to the bloodshed.

In solidarity with all those affected by the war in Ukraine, PEN International and PEN Ukraine are publishing 20 quotes by Ukrainian writers and members of PEN Ukraine, who reflect on the horrific events of recent weeks.

‘Russia’s war against Ukraine has brought destruction, atrocities, and deaths on an unimaginable scale. With this action, we reiterate our solidarity with our friends at PEN Ukraine and all those affected by the war. The Russian authorities must end their senseless war at once, and those responsible for human rights violations, including war crimes, must be brought to justice.’ Burhan Sonmez, PEN International president.

Read the collection:








Watch as prominent writers read quotes from the collection:

Salman Rushdie reads Volodymyr Yermolenko

Ben Okri reads Kateryna Kalytko

Jennifer Clement reads Ihor Kozlovsky

Madeleine Thien reads Ukrainian writers Oleksandr Mykhed and Yuri Vynnychuk

Jennifer Clement reads Borys Khersonsky