Pussy Riot's Alyokhina recalls sentence mitigation appeal
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NIZHNY NOVGOROD, October 18 (RAPSI) – Jailed Pussy Riot member Maria Alyokhina has recalled her motion to mitigate the 2 year prison sentence.
A District Court of Nizhny Novgorod was holding a mitigation hearing Friday when Alyokhina said that she had no ethical right to aks for release while her friend Nadezhda Tolokonnikova was in peril.
Tolokonnikova went on a hunger strike on September 23 and asked to initiate a criminal case against deputy warden, who allegedly threatened her with murder. She also complained over inmates' low wages. The Federal Penitentiary Service claimed that the hunger strike was initiated after her demands to be comfortably accommodated in prison were rejected.
The Investigative Committee opened a probe into Tolokonnikova's allegations.
The Pussy Riot member ended the strike on October, 1. She reportedly gave up her nine-day-long because of unspecified health problems.
In February 2012, five young women wearing brightly colored balaclavas staged a punk rock prayer in Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral. An edited video of their performance was posted on the Internet and caused a public outcry.
In August 2012, the Khamovnichesky District Court in Moscow sentenced Alyokhina and two other Pussy Riot members - Tolokonnikova and Yekaterina Samutsevich - to two years in a prison settlement for hooliganism.
In October 2012, the Moscow City Court changed Samutsevich's verdict to a suspended sentence and released her immediately based on her new attorneys' argument that she had been seized by security guards prior to reaching the altar.
The sentences of Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina were upheld.
Alyokhina was transferred last August to serve her prison term to Nizhny Novgorod region while Tolokonnikova remains in Mordovia.