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Russian Police Shut Down Pussy Riot Video Shoot For Second Straight Day


Leading Pussy Riot punk band member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, pictured in 2018

Russian police in St. Petersburg have for the second consecutive day shut down the shooting of a music video by anti-Kremlin punk band Pussy Riot.

Thirteen people were detained, including band leader Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, during a photography session in a studio, Pyotr Verzilov, a band member and Tolokonnikova's former spouse, said on February 10 in a social-media post.

The group has been trying to record a video of their song Besit, which roughly translates as being irked or vexed by something.

Later the same day, Verzilov posted a video of Tolokonnikova at the police station showing her saying the reason for the group's detention was because of an alleged carbon-monoxide leak at the studio.

Police the previous day disrupted the band's video shoot at the Lenfilm movie studio in St. Petersburg, Russia's second-biggest city.

They cited the "extremism and gay propaganda" law for shutting down the video shot, according to Tolokonnikova.

She and another leading band member, Maria Alyokhina, achieved prominence in 2012 after they were convicted of "hooliganism motivated by religious hatred" for a stunt in which band members burst into Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral and sang a "punk prayer" against then-Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who was campaigning for his return to the presidency at the time.

Alyokhina and Tolokonnikova were close to the end of their two-year prison sentences when they were freed in December 2013, under an amnesty they dismissed as a propaganda stunt to improve Putin's image ahead of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

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