Tuesday, October 16, 2012

The Further Chronicles Of Pussy Riot

According to Reuters two members of punk band Pussy Riot have lost their appeal to stay in a detention center in  Moscow earlier this week, and will now serve the remainder of their terms in a remote penal colony where conditions are much tougher.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Maria Alyokhina, 24, had their sentences imposed over a cathedral protest against Vladimir Putin upheld by Moscow City Court last week. They are convicted of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred and their prison terms will be two years each. Both Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina have small children and lawyers are saying that a transfer to a colony outside Moscow where the regime is more strict than in detention centers will complicate their contacts with families.

"There are many concerns there -- their safety, their health. A barrack for 150 people is not the same thing as a cell for four people," lawyer Mark Feigin told Reuters. The nearest penal colony is located about 100 km from Moscow. While there is precedent for prisoners serving out their term in detention facilities in Russia, it is restricted to terms of six months or less.

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