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Pussy Riot Members Turn Focus to ‘Zone of Law’ Human Rights Organization

Pussy Riot
Ilya S. Savenok, Getty Images

The members of Pussy Riot are free and the group is experiencing more recognition than they had before they were jailed, so what will they do with that platform? According to Rolling Stone, members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina stated in a Friday press conference that they’re planning on putting their support behind a new human rights organization.

Tolokonnikova told journalists, “The system ought to be in shape. We’re going to force it to get into it. We intend to help with the advancement and reaction to complaints of prisoners about the conditions of their incarceration. We want to provide them with legal aid.”

The two women revealed that their new organization will be named the Zone of Law and hope to use their celebrity to bring attention to the organization’s efforts. The members of Pussy Riot have been in the news over the past few couple of years after they were arrested for performing ‘Punk Prayer: Mother of God Drive Putin Away’ at Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral. They were charged with “hooliganism motivated by religious hatred or hostility.” One of the band’s members was freed early from jail after a successful appeal, while the other two members remained behind bars until being amnestied earlier this month.

During the press conference, Tolokonnikova revealed some of the atrocities the prisoners endured, which led her to start her hunger strike. After the band members’ plight became more public, she stated that conditions have improved and she feels it’s “unbelievably important now to continue this work.” Alyokhina added, “We really are provocateurs. But there’s no need to say that word like it’s a swear word. Art is always provocation.”

As for Russian leader Vladimir Putin, the women state their ultimate goal is to topple his regime. “As before, we want to do what we said in our last protest for which we were imprisoned — we want to drive him out,” explained Tolokonnikova. “Our political ambitions never disappeared and possibly they’ve even gotten bigger.”

Meanwhile, the two women stated that they will not capitalize on their fame with a Pussy Riot tour. While they may travel Russia to speak, they don’t intend on staging any concerts.

Read About Pussy Riot's Amnesty From Prison

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