Pussy Riot's Tolokonnikova files request for her colony to be inspected
MOSCOW, September 24 (RAPSI) - Pussy Riot member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova has filed a request with the Russian General Prosecutor’s Office seeking a thorough inspection of the prison colony where she is currently serving out a two-year term, Russian human rights organization Agora told RAPSI Wednesday.
The request, which was filed by Tolokonnikova’s lawyer Dmitry Dinze, claims that the rights of other prisoners in the colony have been violated. It vows to draw attention of specialists in labor law, sanitary control and fire inspection.
Tolokonnikova declared a hunger strike, demanding the launch of an investigation into alleged threats from the prison’s deputy chief to kill her. The authorities responded that Tolokonnikova had opted to go on protest and blackmail after her demands to be comfortably accommodated in prison were rejected.
On Wednesday representatives of the Presidential Council for Human Rights visited Tolokonnikova. Maria Kannabikh said after meeting with Tolokonnikova that she stood her ground and the facts laid out in her request need to be checked.
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 Tolokonnikova and two other Pussy Riot members - Yekaterina Samutsevich and Maria Alyokhina - 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 Alyokhina and Tolokonnikova were upheld. In April 2013, the Zubova Polyana District Court in Mordovia rejected Tolokonnikova's request for parole. Alyokhina's request for parole was rejected by the Berezniki court last May.