The shortlist for the International Publishers Association's Prix Voltaire has been announced. The prize, which has been awarded since 2006, honors "exemplary courage in upholding the freedom to publish and in enabling others to exercise their right to freedom of expression." It carries a cash prize of 10,000 Swiss francs ($9,975).
The shortlist for this year's prize includes:
- Turkish publishing house Avesta Yayinlari, a company that publishes in both Turkish and Kurdish and has been firebombed and accused of publishing propaganda for terrorists
- Malaysian publisher Chong Ton Sin, whose Gerakbudaya Publishing House has defied the government censors by publishing affordable editions of books addressing controversial topics, such as climate change
- Liberal Publishing House, a clandestine publishing house from Vietnam established in 2019 focused on banned books by politically dissident writers
- Maktaba-e-Daniyal, a Pakistani publisher that drew the ire of the government for its Urdu translation of A Case of Exploding Mangoes by Mohammed Hanif, a novel critical of Pakistan’s former president General Zia-ul-Haq
Previous winners of the Prix Voltaire include Egyptian publisher Khaled Lotfy, Swedish Hong Kong publisher Gui Minhai, Turkish publisher Turhan Günay and publishing house Evrensel, Saudi blogger Raif Badawi, and Belarusian publisher Ihar Lohvinau.
The 2020 winner will be announced at the 33rd International Publishers Congress in Lillehammer, Norway, to be held May 28-30.