Tag Archive: Russian Orthodox Church


UPDATE: Pussy Riot member on hunger strike moved to hospital

A member of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot who went on hunger strike in jail last week has been taken to hospital. Maria Alyokhina was moved to a hospital in her prison colony in the Urals town of Berezniki, the husband of one of her bandmates told the Associated Press. Alyokhina began her protest after being barred from attending a parole hearing. She and two other members of the Pussy Riot group were jailed after staging an anti-Vladimir Putin protest in a Moscow cathedral in February 2012. One, Yekaterina Samutsevich, had her sentence suspended on appeal last October. Another, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, was denied parole last month. In a letter published by her lawyers earlier this week, Alyokhina claimed prison officials were attempting to turn fellow inmates against her by holding a security crackdown in advance of the parole hearing. Alyokhina previously spent five months in solitary confinement after claiming that officials deliberately lodged her with hardened criminals and encouraged them to intimidate her.The Pussy Riot trio were jailed for two years last August after being convicted of a breach of public order motivated by religious hatred. The prosecution prompted worldwide condemnation, with Sir Paul McCartney among those calling for the band members to be freed.

A lawyer for members of Russian punk band Pussy Riot has appealed their convictions on charges of “hooliganism” for a protest against President Vladimir Putin in a Moscow cathedral earlier this year, Reuters reports, even as the musicians say they’re more committed than ever to seeking the removal of Putin.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, Maria Alyokhina, 24, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 30, were each sentenced to two years in prisonAugust 17th for their February “punk-prayer” demonstration in Moscow’s Christ the Savior Cathedral. Their lawyer, Nikolai Polozov, said he doubts the court will reverse the convictions. “If the court abides by the law it would throw out the verdict,” Polozov said. “But being realists, understanding all the efforts the state has put into this case, we think it’s unlikely the verdict will be overturned.”

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“This is pure action,” says reader reporter Michael N. About ten activists on Monday afternoon bought a ticket to – quite legally – to get to the South Tower of the Zurich Grossmünster. At about 50 meters but they unfurled a huge banner reading “Free Pussy Riot – Fuck Putin now.” Continue reading

Russian Patriarch Kirill demands 7 years for song in church. Kirill is leading a crusade to maintain mental and often physical slavery of women, openly classing any protests as anti-Christian and female protestors as whores and liars.

Russian punk band were doing devil’s work, says leader of Orthodox church

Patriarch Kirill condemns calls for leniency after Pussy Riot performed unsanctioned show in Moscow’s main cathedral

Three members of the band have already spent 6 months in prison for just playing an anti-Putin song in the church.

Kirill, known for his barbaric, sexist and openly corrupt behaviour, demanded they get 7 years in prison.

A feminist punk band who staged an unsanctioned performance in Moscow’s principal cathedral were doing the work of the devil, according to the head of the Russian Orthodox church. Continue reading

Three members of the feminist punk band Pussy Riot said Vladimir Putin’s Russia was the one on trial as they delivered closing arguments on Wednesday in a case seen as a key test of the powerful president’s desire to crackdown on dissent.

“This is a trial of the whole government system of Russia, which so likes to show its harshness toward the individual, its indifference to his honour and dignity,” Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, one of the trio on trial said in an impassioned statement. “If this political system throws itself against three girls … it shows this political system is afraid of truth.”

The judge set 17 August as the day she would deliver a verdict against the women, charged with hooliganism motivated by religious hatred following an anti-Putin performance in a Moscow cathedral.

Prosecutors have asked for a three-year sentence, arguing that the women sought to insult all of Russian

Pussy Riot members, from left, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich sit in a glass cage at a court room in Moscow. Photograph: Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP

Orthodoxy and denying they were carrying out a political protest.

Tolokonnikova called the charges against them a “political order for repression” and denounced Putin’s “totalitarian-authoritarian system”, insisting Pussy Riot were an example of “opposition art”.

“Even though we are behind bars, we are freer than those people,” she said, looking at the prosecution from inside the glass cage where she and her two bandmates, Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich, have spent the nine-day trial. “We can say what we want, while they can only say what political censorship allows.

“Maybe they think it wouldn’t be wrong to try us for speaking against Putin and his system, but they can’t say that because it’s been forbidden,” she said, wearing a T-shirt emblazoned with the revolutionary words “No Pasaran”.

Couching their case in the long plight of political prisoners in the country, the three women urged Russians to reject Putin’s system and embrace freedom.

Alyokhina, 24, compared the trial to the Soviet Union’s persecution of Joseph Brodsky, when the young poet was charged with being a “social parasite”, becoming a global cause celebre that highlighted the government’s farcical control over culture.

“We are not guilty – the whole world is talking about it,” Alyokhina said, hours after Madonna became the latest, and biggest, star to come to the women’s defence.

“I am not scared of you,” Alyokhina told the court. “I’m not scared of lies and fiction, or the badly formed deception that is the verdict of this so-called court. Because my words will live, thanks to openness.

“When thousands of people will read and watch this, this freedom will grow with every caring person who listens to us in this country.”

Lawyers for Pussy Riot have been expecting a guilty verdict and three-year sentence, but said that was called into question following the judge’s delay in issuing her decision. Lawyer Nikolai Polozov said growing international attention, including recent messages of support from the likes of Madonna and Yoko Ono, had had their effect. “To take a quick decision under such pressure is very dangerous for the authorities, so they’ve taken a time out,” he told the Guardian. “No matter what the verdict is, we have won,” he added.

Each woman ended her closing statement to loud applause from the Russian journalists sitting in the courtroom.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/music/2012/aug/08/pussy-riot-trial-closing-statement/prin

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Yekaterina Samutsevich is seen here being escorted into court Russian prosecutors have asked for three years’ in prison for three women musicians accused of inciting religious hatred during a protest in a cathedral. The three members of the punk band Pussy Riot played a song attacking Russian leader Vladimir Putin in front of an altar [...]

Free Pussy Riot supporters hit Patriarch – Femen Kill Kirill

 The Free Pussy riot campaign has gone global, hitting at the heart of  oppression, semi slavery and open violence against women, in the sexist macho State and the medieval inquisitorial evil church. update  http://thefreeonline.wordpress.com/2012/07/31/ God-is-punishing-jailed-pussy-riot-mothers-says-patriarch Аction [...]

Sting, Madonna give support: Putin and Patriarch witch-hunt Pussy Riot

The trial continues of 3 women from the punk band Pussy Riot. Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Mariya Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich were taken into custody in February after singing a protest song against Putin in Moscow. They have spent already 5 months without bail for nothing more than playing a song in a church without permission. Their [...]

‘God is punishing jailed Pussy Riot mothers’ says Patriarch

 Trial Update. Tuesday. Witnesses were called who swore they were outraged by Pussyriot playing in a church…. God is judging Pussy Riot, says Russian church leader.

Pussy Riot defendant Yekaterina Samutsevich is led into court in Moscow, 7 August Yekaterina Samutsevich is seen here being escorted into court

Russian prosecutors have asked for three years’ in prison for three women musicians accused of inciting religious hatred during a protest in a cathedral.

The three members of the punk band Pussy Riot played a song attacking Russian leader Vladimir Putin in front of an altar on 21 February.

They told the court their performance was a political act, not aimed at hurting the feelings of believers.

Supporters of the women have condemned the case as disproportionate.

Maria Alyokhina, 24, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29, could have faced a maximum sentence of seven years.

”God Judging PussyRiot” says Patriatch   http://thefreeonline.wor

Free Pussy Riot supporters hit Patriarch – Femen Kill Kirill « The Free
thefreeonline.wordpress.com/2012/07/27/free-pussy…
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Sting, Madonna give support: Putin and Patriarch witch-hunt Pussy Riot « The Free
thefreeonline.wordpress.com/2012/08/02/trial-upda…
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Corrupt Church leaders called for heavy sentences, then blamed foreign infiltrators, then claimed God is judging Pussy Riot

latest 7 Aug State demands 3 years for Pussy Riot women http://thefreeonline.wordpress.com/2012/08/07/pussy-riot-state-seeks-three-years-jail/

Updates to 3rd Aug HERE /trial-update-putin-and-patriarch-witch-hunt-pussy-riot/

Trial Update. Tuesday. Witnesses were called who swore they were outraged by Pussyriot playing in a church….

God is judging Pussy Riot, says Russian church leader Continue reading

latest shock news HERE .. Pussy riot get TWO YEARS JAIL  http://www.bbc.co.uk/

Latest news Friday 17 Aug click here http:patriarch-demands-7-years-jail-for-pussy-riot/

latest news Friday 9 Pussy Riot Members Sent to Prison Coloniesth Aug click hereJailed Pussy Riot denounce totalitarian Putin.. verdict

Latest news Tues Oct 23rd  Pussy Riot Members Sent to Prison Colonies

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Jailed Russian Punk-Rockers ‘Pussy Riot’ Begin Hunger Strike (July 2012)

- Common Dreams/ Counterpunch/The Free

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, a member of female punk band, “Pussy Riot”, reacts behind bars during a court hearing in Moscow July 4, 2012. REUTERS/Sergei Karpukhin

Three members of Pussy Riot, the Russian feminist punk-rock band, began a hunger strike Wednesday after a Moscow court suddenly told them they must prepare their defense for trial by Monday.

Maria Alyokhina, Yakaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova were taken into custody in March, after the group’s February performance of “Virgin Mary Put Putin Away,” an anti-Putin song, inside the Russian Orthodox Church’s main cathedral, asking the Virgin Mary to chase President Vladimir Putin out of power.

The three women were arrested over four months ago and have been held without bail on charges of criminal hooliganism  — which carry a possible seven-year prison sentence. Two other female members of the band have avoided arrest thus far.

“I announce a hunger strike because it is unlawful,” said Tolokonnikova, wearing a T-shirt with the famous slogan of the Spanish Civil War, “No pasaran!” (“They shall not pass“), emblazoned across it.

“Until July 9 is not enough (time) for me. I think it is absolutely unlawful,” she said in the Tagansky district court.

“I am categorically against it and I announce a hunger strike,” Alekhina also said after the court delivered a separate ruling on her and another one on Samutsevich.

As the case generates media attention, activists all over the world are advocating for Pussy Riot’s release. Over 100 Russian cultural figures, including some known for pro-government views, have signed a letter calling for the release of the trio. “We see no legal basis or practical reason for the further isolation of these young women, who do not pose any real danger to society,” the letter said.

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Video of Pussy Riot’s February 2012 performance inside the Russian Orthodox Church’s main cathedral which led to their arrests:

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The Russian Orthodox Church has come in for criticism for not intervening in the case and calling for mercy. Instead, leading church figures have criticized the women. Thousands of Orthodox Christian worshipers have turned out in the Russian capital Moscow in April for a prayer to support the controversial Church in what it perceives to be an attack on its authority.

Al Jazeera’s Sue Turton reported on April 22, 2012 from the Russian capital:

* * *

Yekaterina Samutsevich, a member of the feminist punk-rock band, Pussy Riot, is escorted in a district court in Moscow. She and two other band members began a hunger strike Wednesday. They face up to seven years in prison on ‘hooliganism’ charges. (AP/Misha Japaridze)

Pussy Riot in Russia

Putin’s Pussy Problem

by MICHAEL DICKINSON

“Virgin Mary, Mother of God, put Putin away!

Рut Putin away! Put Putin away!”

The shining bronze-plated walls  inside Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour echoed with the raised voices of an acapelo choir of strident female voices on February 21 this year, suddenly and unexpectedly  shattering the silence.  The anonymous feminist punk band Pussy Riot had begun an impromptu performance of their protest song ‘Holy Shit!’

“Black robe, golden epaulettes

All parishioners crawl to bow

The phantom of liberty is in heaven

Gay-pride sent to Siberia in chains!

Members of the group dressed in brightly-coloured slinky dresses danced wildly  in front of the cathedral’s atlar, their faces masked in balaclavas, prostrating themselves and making the sign of the cross, running away and changing positions as church vergers approached and tried to prevent the performance. http:/

/www.youtube.com/watch?v=ALS92big4TY   Eventually captured,  the performers were firmly escorted out of the cathedral, the show over in less than five minutes.

The group said the performance, which came amid the biggest demonstrations against President Vladimir Putin’s rule since he first came to power in 2000, was a protest against the Head of the Orthodox Russian Church, Patriarch Gundyaev Kirill’s support for Putin in the run-up to the March 4 presidential elections.

“The head of the KGB, their chief saint,

Leads protesters to prison under escort

In order not to offend His Holiness

Women must give birth and love!”

Critics say church leaders are no more than Kremlin stooges and that Putin has used the church as a potent tool in his command structure, allowing it to amass vast riches in return for unquestioning support of his policies, and spiritual blessing for his leadership. The church consecrates new nuclear missiles as “Russia’s guardian angels” and urges young Russians to volunteer for military service in Chechnya – all the while enjoying hefty government donations and tax immunity.  Earlier this year Kirill met with Putin and praised his two presidential terms as “God’s miracle.” In return, Putin said that “the state still owes much to the Church.”

“Patriarch Gundyaev believes in Putin

Bitch, better believe in God instead

The belt of the Virgin can’t replace mass-meetings

Mary, Mother of God, is with us in protest!”

Perhaps it’s not surprising less than two weeks after the ‘flash’ performance 3 members of Pussy Riot were arrested and charged with “hooliganism” under Article 213 of the Russian Criminal Code. They have been in detention since then awaiting trial. The criminal code defines hooliganism as “inciting hatred” with the “use of weapons” to create “public disorder.”   If convicted, they face up to seven years in prison.

Patriarch Kirilli condemned Pussy Riot’s act as “blasphemous”, saying that the church was ‘under attack’ and that “the Devil has laughed at us.

And Russian Orthodox church spokesman Vsevolod Chaplin said: “God condemns what they’ve done. I’m convinced that this sin will be punished in this life and the next,  God revealed this to me just like he revealed the Gospels to the church.  There’s only one way out: repentance.”

In reply Pussy Riot say their impromptu performance in the cathedral was’ a special prayer’ addressed to the mother of God “to give courage and power to send away King Herod and his servants, and then begin a new life according to human conscience.”  They also accused the Patriarch of letting the church become “a tool in dirty electoral intrigues.” 

“We knew what the political situation was but now we’re personally feeling the full force of Putin’s Kafkaesque machine,” they said. “The state’s policy is based on a minimum of critical thinking and on a maximum of spite, and a desire to get even with those who don’t please it.”

“The Church’s praise of rotten dictators

The cross-bearer procession of black limousines

A teacher-preacher will meet you at school

Go to classbring him money!”

Amnesty International has declared the detained women as ‘prisoners of conscience’ and is demanding their release.

“The severity of the response of the Russian authorities – the detention on the serious criminal charge of hooliganism – would not be a justifiable response to the peaceful – if, to many, offensive – expression of their political beliefs,” they said.

“The activists left the Cathedral when requested to do so and caused no damage.  The entire action lasted only a few minutes and caused only minimal disruption to those using the cathedral … Instead of prosecuting members of Pussy Riot for their political opinions criticizing the Russian government and some Church officials, the Russian authorities must recognize that their protest is protected by the right to freedom of expression, guaranteed in international human rights law.”

“Virgin Mary, Mother of God, become a feminist!

Become a feminist, become a feminist!”

Two of the three young jailed feminists, Maria Alekhina, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Ekaterina Samucevich, are the mothers of small children.  Investigators have threatened to terminate their parental rights.  Free Pussy Riot demonstrations have sprung up throughout Europe and the United States demanding an aquittal of at least a fair trial.

Meanwhile, Pussy Riot is looking for new recruits.

“Always! Pussy Riot has to keep on expanding. That’s one of the reasons we choose to always wear balaclavas—new members can join the bunch and it does not really matter who takes part in the next act—there can be three of us or eight, like in our last gig on the Red Square, or even 15. Pussy Riot is a pulsating and growing body.”

“We often change names, balaclavas, dresses, and roles inside the groups. People drop out, new members join the group, and the lineup in each Pussy Riot’s guerilla performance can be entirely different.”

“We realized that this country needs a militant, punk-feminist street band that will rip through Moscow’s streets and squares, mobilize public energy against the evil crooks of the Putinist junta and enrich the Russian cultural and political opposition with themes that are important to us: gender and LGBT rights, problems of masculine conformity, absence of a daring political message on the musical and art scenes, and the domination of males in all areas of public discourse. There are loads of Pussy Riot fans in Russia’s protesting masses.”

“We have nothing to worry about, because if the repressive Putinist police crooks throw one of us in prison, five, ten, 15 more girls will put on colorful balaclavas and continue the fight against their symbols of power.”

“Do you know anyone who wants to come to Moscow, play illegal concerts, and help us fight Putin and Russian chauvinists? Or maybe they could start their own local Pussy Riot, if Russia is too cold and too far.”

Patriarch Kirilli said that the Pussy Riot performance in the cathedral “desecrated” the church.

“We will have no future if sacred shrines are desecrated, if this desecration is seen by some as virtue, as some proper expression of political protest, as some appropriate action or harmless joke,” he said.

Perhaps he should be reminded of the ‘hooligan’ Jesus and his act of desecration when he overthrew the tables of the Money changers and drove them out of the Temple in Jerusalem.

That man would have been proud of these protesting Pussies.

“Shit, shit, the Lord’s shit!

Shit, shit, the Lord’s shit!

Virgin Mary, Mother of God, put Putin away!

Рut Putin away!  Put Putin away!”

Michael Dickinson can be contacted via his website – http://yabanji.tripod.com/

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