Omar Hazek has published two novels, and poetry in English and Arabic. He has used his writing and poetry to protest against his own, but also many others’ deprivation of freedom.
His fight against corruption in his country has led to further oppression; in 2013 Omar was sentenced to two years’ in prison for ‘protesting without permission’ in support of the family of a man who was beaten to death whilst in police custody.
During his imprisonment he was adopted by PEN International as an Honorary Member of Austrian PEN and Danish PEN, the organisation supports persecuted writers from around the world. A year after his release he was awarded the PEN International and Oxfam Novib Award for Freedom of Expression.