Russian All-Girl Punk Band ‘Pussy Riot’ Faces 7 Years in Prison For Putin Criticism Inside Church

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Alissa de Carbonnel
Reuters
July 30, 2012

photoNadezhda Tolokonnikova, one member of the feminist punk group, is hauled into court. Photo: Mikhail Metzel / AP

Three women who protested against Vladimir Putin in a “punk prayer” on the altar of Russia’s main cathedral went on trial on Monday in a case seen as a test of the longtime leader’s treatment of dissent during a new presidential term.

The women from the band ‘Pussy Riot’ face up to seven years in prison for an unsanctioned performance in February in which they entered Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral, ascended the altar and called on the Virgin Mary to “throw Putin out!”

Maria Alyokhina, 24, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29, were brought to Moscow’s Khamovniki court for Russia’s highest-profile trial since former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky was convicted in 2010, for a second time, in the same courtroom where the Pussy Riot trial began.

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Here’s the controversial video. The song begins with a choir-like chorus singing the lyrics: “St. Maria, Virgin, Drive away Putin, Drive away! Drive away Putin!”
For english subtitles use “CC” button.

This article was posted: Monday, July 30, 2012 at 6:00 am

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