We are grateful to the following authors and illustrators for publicly pledging not to attend the festival until the issues highlighted on our home page have been addressed by Emirates Airline and the Dubai Government.

If you are published UK author or illustrator, you can pledge your support on this page.


We are a group of authors and illustrators who object to the human rights abuses and suppression of free speech carried out by the Dubai government and the continuing expansion of Emirates Airline (owned by the Dubai government) which is actively undermining efforts to avert climate catastrophe.

We pledge not to appear at the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature until the Dubai government complies with the universal principles of human rights and the airline commits to reducing its CO2 emissions.

Jonathan Emmett – Author

Laurence Anholt – Author

Lynne Garner – Author

Michelle Robinson – Author

Clare Bell – Author

Cathy Maclennan – Author / illustrator / artist

Linda Sarah – Author / illustrator

Greta Stoddart – Writer

Anne Booth – Author

Debi Gliori – Author / illustrator

Dawn Finch – Author

Nicola Davies – Author

Elli Woollard – Author

Derek Wall – Author

Brian Moses – Poet

Anna Perera – Author

John Shelley – Illustrator

Amanda Craig – Author

Jeni Williams – Poet / creative writing lecturer

Professor Tony Curtis – Writer (retired academic)

Faye Hanson – Author / illustrator

James de la Rue – Illustrator

Caryl Hart – Author

Lydia Monks – Author / illustrator

Fleur Hitchcock – Author

Richard Morgan – Author

Jackie Morris – Illustrator / author

Val McDermid – Writer

Steve Tasane - Author

"I will not lend my name to festivals associated with regimes that persecute their LGBT citizens. I won't strut my stuff in a country where I would not be allowed to live openly and honestly without fear of arrest, incarceration or torture."

Val McDermid

"The Dubai government cannot have it both ways - if they want to encourage literature and the arts, then they must allow unrestricted debate and freedom of speech to all."

Laurence Anholt

"No author should support a country where human rights and free speech are abused. This is non-negotiable."

Amanda Craig

"Dubai and other Arab states have appalling human rights records and pressure should be put on them to object to this."

Professor Tony Curtis

"The Emirates Airline Festival of Literature is helping to create a smokescreen of respectability around an environmentally unfriendly company owned by an oppressive government."

Jonathan Emmett

"For me the issue has never arisen, as I have not been invited, but I have been astonished for years that people would go to this festival."

Jackie Morris