KyivPost

Russian minister defends Pussy Riot sentence

Print version
Oct. 3, 2012, 4:14 p.m. | Russia and former Soviet Union — by Associated Press

This image taken from video filmed by the band Pussy Riot and made available for APTN shows two unidentified band members wearing their trademark balaclavas and brightly colored miniskirts climb down an abandoned building in undisclosed location.
© AP

Associated Press

Associated Press

NICOSIA, Cyprus — Russia's justice minister is defending a two-year prison sentence handed down to members of rock band Pussy Riot, rebuffing European Union concerns that the punishment was excessive.

Alexander Konovalov says the sentence given to the three band members for hooliganism after they performed a "punk prayer" against President Vladimir Putin at Moscow's main cathedral is a "a very subjective matter."

Konovalov was responding Wednesday to EU Home Affairs Commissioner Cecilia Malmstrom who repeated EU concerns that the sentence was disproportionate to a "peaceful expression of protest," even though it may have offended many people.

Konovalov urged the EU to engage Russian authorities in dialogue on the issue instead of "coming up with a politicized assessment based on unverified information."

The Kyiv Post is disabling its online comment section due to an increase in trolls, violent comments and other personal attacks. Other news organizations worldwide have taken similar steps for the same reasons. The Kyiv Post regrets having to take this action. The newspaper believes in a robust public debate, but the discussion must be constructive and intelligent. For the time being, the Kyiv Post will allow comments on its moderated Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/kyivpost/. The newspaper will consider hosting online comments again when circumstances allow. Thank you from the Kyiv Post.

KyivPost

© 1995–2015 Public Media

Web links to Kyiv Post material are allowed provided that they contain a URL hyperlink to the www.kyivpost.com material and a maximum 500-character extract of the story. Otherwise, all materials contained on this site are protected by copyright law and may not be reproduced without the prior written permission of Public Media at news@kyivpost.com
All information of the Interfax-Ukraine news agency placed on this web site is designed for internal use only. Its reproduction or distribution in any form is prohibited without a written permission of Interfax-Ukraine.