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 Pussy Riot , Christmas in prison, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova,Maria Alyokhina
Pussy Riot Spend Their First Brutal Christmas In Jail - ArtLyst Article image

Pussy Riot Spend Their First Brutal Christmas In Jail

25-12-2012
 
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It will be a bleak day for Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova spending their first Christmas in a draconian Russian jail. Unlike the British or other European penal systems, where a full Christmas lunch is served, with visiting rights granted to families, Alyokhina, one of the two remaining members of the Art/Punk band Pussy Riot has been put into solitary confinement because of tensions with the other inmates. The conditions surrounding Nadezhda Tolokonnikova the other jailed artist is not widely reported or known.

The pair were jailed for two years in August for performing an anti-Kremlin song in Moscow's main cathedral, Christ the Saviour, on 21 February. They were convicted of "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred" over the anti-Putin "punk prayer". The judge stated that the women had "crudely undermined social order" and shown a "complete lack of respect",during their action in February. The Members of the band have always professed that their "punk prayer" was a political act in protest, against Church leader's support of President Vladimir Putin, not an act against the Church itself. Conditions are reported to be rough and basic at the work camps located in Perm and Mordovia, east of Moscow. Those areas were traditionally used for mass prison colonies in the Soviet era.

It is on a day like today, as we celebrate with our families and friends that we must remember prisoners in countries with less than acceptable human rights records and for all the injustices and breeches of freedom around the world stretching from China to Syria and Russia.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich (the latter released on appeal), the jailed members of Pussy Riot have been nominated for Time magazine's influential Person Of The Year Award. They make up part of a 38-strong long-list of nominees which includes Barack Obama.


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