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Pussy Riot’s release backed by Russian rockers in St. Petersburg concert

By Agence France-Presse
Sunday, September 9, 2012 18:20 EDT
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Russian rock group DDT, whose lead singer is known for his anti-Kremlin views, was among the bands that played a concert in Saint Petersburg Sunday backing the country’s political prisoners.

Attending the show were two lawyers for the jailed members of female punk band Pussy Riot, sentenced last month for hooliganism motivated by religious hatred after they belted out a song criticising President Vladimir Putin in Moscow’s main cathedral.

The sentence of two years in a corrective labour colony drew a storm of international criticism and a celebrity campaign for the trio’s freedom that enlisted the likes of Bjork and Madonna as well as Paul McCartney and Sting.

The Sunday concert united a couple hundred people in a club in the centre of Russia’s second city, where DDT frontman Yury Shevchuk spoke out against Russia’s political repression.

“Twenty years ago we fought against political repression. Today, we’re at it again. Twenty years have gone by and nothing has changed,” Shevchuk said from the stage, according to an AFP correspondent.

Pussy Riot defence attorney Nikolai Polozov for his part told the crowd that in Russia “there are people who are condemned only because they wanted to express themselves.”

He then invited them to cry out “Freedom for political prisoners.”

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
AFP journalists cover wars, conflicts, politics, science, health, the environment, technology, fashion, entertainment, the offbeat, sports and a whole lot more in text, photographs, video, graphics and online.
 
 
 
 
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