BREAKING NEWS

BREAKING NEWS

Russian court upholds jail terms for two Pussy Riot protesters, frees third

 Comments
Now Reading :

Russian court upholds jail terms for two Pussy Riot protesters, frees third

Russian court upholds jail terms for two Pussy Riot protesters, frees third
Text size Aa Aa

A Russian appeal court on Wednesday upheld the two-year jail sentences handed down to two members of punk band Pussy Riot for a protest against Vladimir Putin in a cathedral but freed a third member by suspending her sentence.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Maria Alyokhina, 24, were found guilty of vandalism motivated by racial hatred after a “punk prayer” protest against Vladimir Putin in a Moscow cathedral.

However a third protester, 30-year-old Yekaterina Samoutsevitch, was released after she was issued with a suspended sentence. At the original trial she had also been given two years jail.

One supporter of the group, Grigory Saksanovov, who is outside the court house in Moscow described his feelings towards the sentence: “I was in total shock. I’m not demanding anything. The country is heading into a clerical obscurant hole, where we can’t recognise the lies anymore. I’m not a believer myself, but I know that those people, the prophets, stood by the truth. I can feel their souls. But the clerical synod is full of lies. They only need money and power.”

The case sparked an international outcry, with Western governments and campaigners condemning the sentences as disproportionate.

However in Russia many people were shocked by the protest. President Vladimir Putin described the jailing as the “right decision.”