Pussy Riot’s Nadya Tolokonnikova was Arrested in Moscow

Her staged protest of the treatment of Russia's female prisoners was abruptly ended by the police

Pussy Riot‘s Nadya Tolokonnikova and activist Katherine Nenasheva were arrested today in Moscow for protesting Russian President Vladimir Putin. The protests were held on Russia Day, the national holiday of the Russian Federation.

On the same day that Putin made celebratory comments about his country’s “democracy and openness,” Nenasheva and Tolokonnikova were detained by officials for their demonstration in support of women prisoners. The pair donned prison garb and planned to stitch together a makeshift Russian flag with the phrase “Prison Camp Russia” on its face.

In anticipation of the Russia Day protest, Tolokonnikova released a statement titled “Don’t Be Afraid,” which outlined their plans:

For 30 days the activist Katherine Nenasheva will be living her regular life wearing a prison robe of a female convict [sic]. She goes to exams, takes meetings, goes to the movies, gets groceries, goes out—she continues her daily life.

June 12 is the 18th day of Katherine Nenasheva’s action and also Russia Day—an important holiday in Russia that celebrates our flag and Constitution. On this day I am joining Katherine to sew a huge Russian flag in the same prison uniform that I wore during my time in the prison camps.

We will sew the Russian flag on Bolotnaya square, the square that became the starting point for many years in prison for dozens of activists who went out to protest Putin’s regime in May 2012. So here we are, on this square, and we will sew the sign “PRISON CAMP RUSSIA” to the face of the Russian flag on Russia Day.

As part of Pussy Riot, Tolokonnikova served two years in prison for “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred or hostility.” Since her release in 2013, Tolokonnikova has continued to protest the Russian government and Putin especially. The tension between the punk band and the president was even used as a story line in season three of House of Cards, in which Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina played themselves.

Consequence of Sound has photos of the interrupted demonstration and the arrest.

(via Consequence of Sound)

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