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A little background:
In Moscow, the case against the long-detained feminist punk group Pussy Riot is coming down to the wire. A judge has concluded the trial and will deliver a verdict on August 17, Rian reports. Prosecutors are looking to imprison the trio of women for three years.
Three members of Pussy Riot were jailed in March– Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, Maria Alyokhina, 24, and Yekaterina Samutsevich, 29– following a February 21 performance at Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral, which lasted less than one minute. The group shouted a “punk prayer”, which declared “Virgin Mary, Mother of God, become a feminist!” and “Put Putin out,” while clenching their fists and punching the air. The act was explicitly political.
But Russian prosecutors claim the “punk prayer” intended to offend the Orthodox Christian community, and the three members were charged with “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred.” The band’s lawyer, however, maintains the accusations of “hooliganism” are flawed, seeing as Pussy Riot neither provoked nor threatened violence or damage to the church.