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Dublin: 13°C Friday 30 October 2020
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Pussy Riot protest held outside Russian Embassy in Dublin

Amnesty International is holding a “demonstration in solidarity” with the three women jailed in Moscow last week.

A work by activist Rosita Sweetman displayed during demonstrations against the verdict last week in Dublin.
A work by activist Rosita Sweetman displayed during demonstrations against the verdict last week in Dublin.
Image: Niall Carson/PA Wire

AMNESTRY INTERNATIONAL supporters in Ireland are holding a demonstration outside the Russian Embassy in south Dublin this morning in solidarity with the three members of the Pussy Riot punk band jailed last week.

The three women – Maria Alekhina, Ekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova - were convicted of hooliganism charges last week by a Moscow court and sentenced to two years. The women were arrested in February after staging a protest at a cathedral in Moscow, during which they performed an anti-Putin ‘punk prayer’.

During the sentencing, Judge Marina Syrova said that the women had grossly violated public order and “deeply insulted the faith of the believes with their disrespectful criminal act”.

The verdict drew concerns around the world over freedom of expression issues, with people staging demonstrations against the trial’s outcome in the US, Europe and Australia.

“We are calling for the Russian authorities to overturn Friday’s court ruling which found the band guilty of ‘hooliganism on grounds of religious hatred’,” Noeleen Hartigan, programmes director at Amnesty International Ireland.

“They must release the members of Pussy Riot immediately and unconditionally,” Hartigan added, saying that Amnesty believes the trial was “politically motivated”.

“The band has been wrongfully prosecuted for what was a legitimate – if potentially offensive – protest action and in sentencing them to two years’ imprisonment, Russia has set the limits of freedom of expression in the wrong place.”

Pussy Riot: Police “pursuing other band members” >

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