Wednesday, May 22, 2013
BEREZNIKI, Russia (AP) — An imprisoned member of the punk band Pussy Riot says she is going on hunger strike after a judge refused to allow her to attend a court hearing where she was seeking release on parole.
Maria Alekhina, watching the trial from a prison colony via video link, ordered her defense not to participate in the hearing Wednesday, saying the court was violating her rights.
A judge in the province of Perm in the Ural mountains, where Alekhina is being held, postponed the hearing until Thursday.
Alekhina and fellow band member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova are serving two-year sentences for "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred" for an impromptu protest in Moscow's main cathedral last year. Tolokonnikova's appeal for parole was denied last month.
A third band member, Yekaterina Samutsevich, was paroled last year.