Pussy Riot to be freed? Russian Prime Minister calls for the band’s release

Pussy Riot to be freed? Russian Prime Minister calls for the band's release

I know, I know, and you were just getting used to the idea that rock bands who speak ill of their country’s government should be hastily tossed in jail! Looks like you just might have to adjust your expectations once again, though, as Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev stated today that he thought the three-piece punk group’s two-year sentences were, in the words of the Wall Street Journal, “too harsh and he doesn’t see any point in keeping them behind bars”.

Recall that, following a five-month detainment after an anti-Putin demonstration in Moscow’s main cathedral, the group was found guilty last month of “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred” and sentenced to two years in prison. While such statements are certainly no guarantee of what’s to come; it is nonetheless encouraging news to the band and its many supporters around the world in the weeks leading up to their October 1 appeal.

Speaking at a regional United Russia party meeting, Medvedev stated that, in his view, “prolonging their time in prison in connection to this case seems unproductive,” noting that the six-plus months during which they’ve been in the slammer already is probably more than adequate punishment. Check it:

The term is very strong. I would even say a terrible burden. I don’t want to replace the judge … but the time they have already served is, in essence, more than enough to make them think about what happened, whether it was from their own stupidity or for other reasons.

Medvedev also added that he was still “sickened” by the band’s actions, though. Just so you know.

• Free Pussy Riot: http://freepussyriot.org

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