May 22, 2013 19:13

Jailed Pussy Riot member goes on hunger strike

Maria Alyokhina was denied the right to attend her own parole hearing

Jailed Pussy Riot member goes on hunger strike

Photo: PA

Maria Alyokhina of Pussy Riot has announced that she will be going on hunger strike.

Alongside Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Alyokhina is one of two imprisoned members of the Russian punk collective, following the release on suspended sentence of a third member, Yekaterina Samutsevich, last October. The three women 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.

Alyokhina told a court via a video link that she would be going on hunger strike as she had been refused the right to attend her own parole hearing and as such her rights had been violated, reports BBC News.

Last month Nadezhda Tolokonnikova was denied parole. The 23-year-old is currently being detained in a distant prison colony in Mordovia, a Russian region infamous for its high number of prison camps. Tolokonnikova had been eligible for early release, but her request was turned down by the penal colony she is being held in because she had apparently failed to "repent" for her actions.

Tolokonnikova claimed she would not give up on political activism regardless of what happened, adding: "My life isn't going to change – there will be new key components because of the experience I've gathered here. The vectors of politics and art will continue the same."

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