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HindustanTimes Sat,22 Nov 2014

World

Russia: Pussy Riot punk resumes hunger strike against Putin
AFP
Moscow, October 18, 2013
First Published: 14:59 IST(18/10/2013)
Last Updated: 15:43 IST(19/10/2013)
Pussy Riot punk Nadezhda Tolokonnikova has resumed a hunger strike after being transferred back to her penal colony from hospital, her husband said on Friday.


   
Tolokonnikova, 23, is serving a two-year sentence in a penal colony in the Mordovia region of central Russia for the band's protest against President Vladimir Putin in a Moscow church.
   
On September 23 she began an eight-day hunger strike demanding to be moved to another penal colony over "slave-labour" conditions. It ended with her being taken to a civilian hospital and placed on a drip.
   
"Currently Nadezhda is in the sick bay of Penal Colony Number 14 and as she promised earlier, she is resuming her hunger strike over her transfer back to the colony," her husband Pyotr Verzilov said in a letter sent to AFP.
   
The regional prison service confirmed Verzilov's comments, saying in a statement on its website that "on Friday Tolokonnikova wrote a statement saying that she was refusing to take food."
   
It said she had been transferred back to the penal colony from a civilian hospital on Thursday and was now under observation of prison doctors.
   
Her bandmate Maria Alyokhina, 23, on Friday refused at a court hearing to proceed with a request for a softening of her punishment. She said she was doing this in solidarity with Tolokonnikova.
   
Tolokonnikova began last month's hunger strike after releasing a letter complaining that women at the penal colony were treated like "slaves" and worked 17-hour days in a sewing workshop.
   
Tolokonnikova also said the deputy prison governor had hinted she could be killed by inmates if she complained about abuses.
   
The two women, both of whom have young children, are due to be released in March.  Russia, rights, prison,  music, protest

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