Two Members Of Pussy Riot Flee Russia

Earlier this month a Russian court condemned three members of the Russian feminist punk band Pussy Riot to a two-year prison sentence for staging an anti-Putin protest inside a church in February. Now two other members of the group have fled Russia to avoid persecution, the band has confirmed.

Pussy Riot’s Twitter account said earlier today that the two activists are no longer in Russia and that the group is "recruiting foreign feminists to prepare new protest actions." There are still 12 members of Pussy Riot living in Russia; it is unclear if the escaped members were two of the five performers who evaded arrest after the protest in February. However, given how Russian police still claim to be on the hunt from the two who evaded arrest, its reasonable to assume these recent Russian defectors might be them.

Celebrities from Madonna to Bjork to Paul McCartney have spoken out in defense of Pussy Riot prisoners Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Mariya Alyokhina, and Yekaterina Samutsevich and their right to freedom of expression. I’ll be curious to see which "foreign feminists" the group recruits to stage larger actions and especially which country grants the two escapees asylum.

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