Putin critical of punk rockers’ political stunt
RUSSIAN president Vladimir Putin yesterday criticised feminist punk rockers facing trial for performing a “punk prayer” against him at Moscow’s main cathedral, but said their punishment should not be too severe.
Putin, on a visit to the London Olympics, made his first comments on the three members of the band Pussy Riot who have been imprisoned since February.
The women’s plight has attracted strong international criticism among politicians, campaigners, artists and musicians.
Asked about the case, Putin said the stunt “was no good” and would have entailed a much tougher punishment for its participants if they had performed it at a holy site in Israel or even death if they had done it at a Muslim site in Russia’s North Caucasus region.
He went on to say they had learned their lesson before adding: “I don’t think that a verdict should be very severe.”
The women are facing a seven-year jail sentence.
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