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Pussy Riot supporters hope Madonna will back campaign

Madonna is due to perform in Moscow next week and supporters of the guerrilla protest group hope she will speak out against the trial.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Maria Alekhina in a glass cage at the court room in Moscow on Friday
Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Maria Alekhina in a glass cage at the court room in Moscow on Friday
Image: AP Photo/Misha Japaridze

SUPPORTERS OF GUERRILLA protest group Pussy Riot are hoping that Madonna will lend her support to the campaign when she plays a concert in Moscow next week.

Three members of the punk protest collective are on trial and face up to seven years in prison on charges of hooliganism after they disrupted a service at Moscow’s main cathedral in February.

The group, who were wearing ski-masks, took over the pulpit and chanted “Mother Mary, drive Putin away”. They women were rounded up by security guards less than a minute into the protest.

The trial has attracted intense attention as supporters claim that the Vladimir Putin-led government is trying to crack down on dissent.

The Guardian reports that many supporters of the protest group in Russia will be urging Madonna to take a stronger stance on the trial. In a recent interview on state-run Russian television Madonna said she was “sorry that they’ve been arrested”.

A number of bands and musicians have already added their support to the three women, Maria Alyokhina, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Yekaterina Samutsevich.

Pulp’s Jarvis Cocker, Pete Townshend of The Who and Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys were among the British musicians who wrote an open letter published in The Times on Thursday calling for the women to be released.

Faith No More invited other members of Pussy Riot on stage during the band’s recent performance in a Moscow club. Separately, Anthony Kiedis, the leader singer with the Red Hot Chili Peppers wore a t-shirt with Pussy Riot written on it during a recent concert in St Petersburg.

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