Pussy Riot Fears For Fate of Their Young Children

On Friday, a judge is to deliver a verdict in the trial of Russian feminist punk band Pussy Riot members Maria AlyokhinaYekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova. Prosecutors have asked for a sentence of three years for the three women on charges of “hooliganism” for performing an obscenity-laced song criticizing President Vladimir Putin in Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior on February 21.

A guilty verdict is a foregone conclusion as acquittals by Russian courts are “virtually unheard of,” says the Telegraph.

Two of the women have children, Alyokhina, a five-year-old son, Filipp, and Tolokonnikova, a four-year-old daughter, Gera. According to the German magazine Der Spiegel, Alyokhina and Tolokonnikova are both fearful of the authorities seizing their children and placing them with foster families. The band’s lawyers are requesting custody of the children.

Pyotr Versilov, Tolokonnikova’s husband, is caring for Gera and tells Der Spiegel that she has been telling people that “Putin has locked her mother in a cage and that we must find a way to free them.” She has also been drawing pictures about how to tear down the prison walls and free her mother and the band members, who have been detained since March.

Support for Pussy Riot around the world remains high, with Madonna performing in Moscow with “Pussy Riot” etched on her back and Reykjavik mayor Jon Gnarr appearing in a local gay pride parade wearing a dress and a balaclava while dancing in a truck with the banner “FREE PUSSY RIOT.” While many Russian artists have released a book supporting Pussy Riot, celebrity ballerina Anastasia Volochkova has demanded that they repent for their December performance and clean public toilets, says The Moscow Times.

In an interview with the BBC, seven members of the punk collective affirmed that they will continue their protests. Wearing balaclavas and using their nicknames, Terminator, said that their December performance was ”not an act of hooliganism, definitely not an anti-religious act” but a “political performance” against Putin. Another member, Mother, said that “We’ll try to follow our principles, of freedom of speech… we will do it to support our sisters in prison.”

 

Related Care2 Coverage

5 Reasons Pussy Riot Has Already Won (Video)

Madonna Speaks Up for Gay Rights and Pussy Riot in Russia

Summer of the Balaclava-Wearing Women

 

Photo from the Church of Pussy Riot in Magdeburg, Germany, by ericzim

28 comments

ali a.
ali a.3 years ago

It is admirable to stand and fight for your rights,

Look this up and petition and tell all your friends.
http://www.thepetitionsite.com/2/justiceforaa/

For watching enactment video(8min) go to:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oeR-lmU44sY

Wendy Schroeder
Wendy Schroeder3 years ago

They should have thought of the consequences of their actions. Protesting in a church was a bad idea even if their intentions were good. Yes, I do feel bad for their children.

Sam M.
Sam E M.3 years ago

Oops, sorry for the spelling mistake ('they' instead of 'there').
There are ways and means of protesting and these girls chose one of the worst options, in effect belittling a religious institution and faith instead of their so-called target Putin.
The two mothers with this girls' band should have remembered they had children before they took part in this ridiculous protest, not suddenly express worry about their very young offspring when faced with a jail sentence.
However, the sentence should match the 'crime' and two years in prison is way overboard. How about work in a children's hospital instead.

Sam M.
Sam E M.3 years ago

I wonder what the reaction would have been if a punk girl band had done exactly the same thing in a cathedral (or a synagogue, mosque, temple...) in America for instance.
Something tells me they would have been a public outcry at their blatant disrespect of the religion as well as all those who follow it.
They shouldn't get two years in prison, but nor should they get off scot free.

Stanley B.
Stanley Balgobin3 years ago

I am in sympathy with the Pussy Riot. What we have here in "freedom West" is much much worse. Consider Julian Assange granted politiical assylum by Ecuador and cannot leave the London Embassy to depart the country for fear of being arrested by British police. The threat to invade a sovereign Nation's Embassy is a blatant violation of International Law! This is also a "free speech" issue. The WikiLeaks exposed American murderous campaign of killing innocent Iraqui citizens, women and children. Rodney Manning is held in isolation under barbaric conditions, termed cruel and unusual punishment by Human Rights observers. He has been kept naked in an unheated cell with blaring loud music 24/7 and tortured by his guards in Guantanamo in Cuba. The government want the same fate for Assange. This is not Russia, this is the good ole USA response to "free speech"

Yana V.
Yana V.3 years ago

I live in Moscow and i feel a shame for that girls!!!!! i dont know why u protect them. ok if they care about future of their children, why they go to the curch??? it was terrible act! i despise them... today they have recived 2 years in prison, i would wish them much more...

Donna Burgess
Donna B.3 years ago

These are VERY brave women standing up not just for themselves.. Demanding change for all and a better future for THEIR children.

Emily Drew
Emily Drew3 years ago

Wow what is happening to them is just so wrong

Valarie Snell
Valarie Snell3 years ago

great comment Chris C

Chris C.
Chris C.3 years ago

What has happened to these ladies is so wrong on so many levels. It takes incredible guts to stand up for what you believe but even moreso in Russia! Court? It's all a fiasco...a lie. But I would bet these ladies did this FOR the benefit of their children and their children's futures!