NME spoke exclusively to the punk protestor from her prison camp in the first interview since her hunger strike

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Imprisoned Pussy Riot member Maria Alyokhina has said she will not leave Russia when she is released.

Speaking to NME the day she was released from hospital following her recent hunger strike, Pussy Riot’s Maria Alyokhina spoke exclusively to NME via videophone under the close watch of her prison guards – watch the footage above.

From her prison camp in Berezniki in the remote Ural Mountains, Alyokhina revealed that she will not try and flee Russia when she is released: “I have no intention of emigrating. Under no circumstances will I emigrate. That’s certain,” she said.

Alyokinha is one of the members of Russian feminist punk collective Pussy Riot who were imprisoned in August 2012 for their now infamous “punk prayer” protest in Moscow’s Cathedral Of Christ The Savior in February 2012. She went on hunger strike at the end of May after she was refused the right to attend her parole hearing. She had also claimed that prison officials had implemented a security crackdown in advance of the hearing in an attempt to turn other inmates against her.

When asked how she was Alyokinha replied: “Wonderful! I’ve just got out of the camp hospital. Tomorrow I go back to work [sewing uniforms for prison guards for 12 hours a day]” She added: “I stopped [the hunger strike] because they met my demands – they got rid of the locks [on the doors of the workshops]. I wasn’t surprised. What they were doing was illegal. I thought it would happen sooner or later – I just expected it to take much longer.”

As for Pussy Riot’s plans after her release, she wouldn’t confirm whether an album was in the pipeline, but said: “Ah it’s a surprise – I can’t tell you! I hope we’ll do some sort of action, but I can’t say much about the concrete content because that would contradict the main idea of the band – spontaneity. But as for whether it’ll be with Pussy Riot… it’s possible that it’ll be with Pussy Riot, let’s put it like that.”

Alyokhina also revealed that she doesn’t believe she will be released before her sentence ends in 2014. “I don’t think about release anymore,” she says. “I won’t be released early”. However, she wants to use the time productively, revealing that she is seeking permission to do some theatre performances and that she might write about her experiences. “If I can find the time, I’m going to use it to write,” she said.

Maria Alyokhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova were jailed for two years in August 2012 for breach of public order motivated by religious hatred after staging their infamous ‘punk prayer’ protest against Vladimir Putin in Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral. A third Pussy Riot member, Yekaterina Samutsevich, was released on a suspended sentence last October.