Pussy Riot Found Guilty of Hooliganism

They put Putin and Pussy in the same sentence.  Three members of the Russian feminist punk group Pussy Riot were found guilty today on charges of “hooliganism” and promoting “religious hatred” as a result of their protest in Russia’s main cathedral against Vladimir Putin’s return to the presidency. Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29, and Maria Alekhina, 24, face up to seven years in jail for their actions. Prosecutors have asked for a three-year jail sentence. They received two.

The Pussy Riot members were charged after screaming “Mother Mary please drive Putin away” during a concert inside Christ Savior Cathedral, one of Moscow’s grandest houses of worship, in February. A top official in the Russian Orthodox Church denied that the Church had pushed for the prosecution, saying instead that it had been willed by God.

Madonna recently performed with a Pussy Riot-style face mask, with the group’s name on her back during a Moscow concert. CNN quoted her saying:

“Everyone has the right to free speech, everywhere in the world. Maria, Katya, Nadia, I pray for you,” Madonna said at Tuesday’s concert, according to RIA Novosti. “They did something brave with their action. And I am praying for their freedom.”

For more protest of Putin’s Russia visit Russia Rising: Votes for Freedom / 30 Artists and Designers Challenge the 2011 and 2012 Russian Elections at School of Visual Arts (SVA) September 4 to 22, 2012. Or go here.

3 thoughts on “Pussy Riot Found Guilty of Hooliganism

  1. Richard

    To regard this case as simply an issue of free speech is to miss that these women have desecrated a holy place, sacred to a ravaged people clamoring to regain their spiritual footing. Who knows what two years might produce, doubtfully repentance, probably more enraged outbreaks, definitely more cool and clever graphics; but there is rightfully some consequence for such careless actions, even if it could’ve been something more appropriate or more affecting. Mercy!

  2. Jessy Smith

    You know, people think this an isolated incedent in Russia.  They think similar arrests could never happen in the US but with the complacency and apathy in regards to our civil liberties and rights…. We’re probably not far off. 

  3. Paper Acrobat

    Hard to believe that this day and age people can be jailed for speaking their mind. I think Russia have over reacted… Does anyone really take these girls in masks seriously anyway?
    Surely they are just kids expressing their feelings.

COMMENT