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Russian Cultural Figures Sign Petition For Punk Rockers


Yekaterina Samutsevich, one of the members of Pussy Riot, appears in a Moscow court on June 20.

Yekaterina Samutsevich, one of the members of Pussy Riot, appears in a Moscow court on June 20.

More than 100 of Russia's best-known cultural figures have signed a letter calling for authorities to release from jail three members of the female Pussy Riot punk band.

The signatories of the petition, published on June 27 in the “Moskovsky komsomolets” daily, include not only well-known opponents of President Vladimir Putin, such as author Boris Akunin, poet Dmitry Bykov, and the rock singer Yury Shevchuk, but also actrors Chulpan Khamatova and Yevgeny Mironov, who both appeared in videos earlier this year urging Russians to vote for Putin in the March elections.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich, and Maria Alekhina of Pussy Riot have been held in pre-trial detention since March over their performance of an anti-Putin "punk prayer" in Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral.

Based on reporting by AFP, Interfax, and ITAR-TASS

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