27 July 2012, 19:10
U.S. ambassador to Russia: Pussy Riot performers' treatment too hars
Moscow, July 27, Interfax - The U.S. ambassador to Russia has expressed concern over current criminal action against three women punk rock band performers who have been in detention since February for a scandalous anti-Putin performance inside Christ the Savior Cathedral in Moscow.
The action against the Pussy Riot band musicians is most likely disproportionate to what they have done, Ambassador Michael McFaul told Russian online newspaper Gazeta.ru.
The three young women, who were wearing masks, appeared in the cathedral on February 21. They climbed a pulpit and staged a punk concert. The action triggered a huge outcry.
A criminal case on "hooliganism" charges was opened. The performers were detained.
Rights defenders hold that the maximum the three women deserve for their minor hooliganism is administrative punishment. Amnesty International declared the Pussy Riot detainees prisoners of conscience.
The three performers were remanded in custody until January 12, 2013, during a closed-door hearing at Moscow's Khamovnichesky Court.
The next hearing is due on July 30.
McFaul expressed anxiety in his gazeta.ru interview at allegations by Russian officials that the action against the Pussy Riot musicians is in line with international legal standards, and that so is some recent Russian legislation that has been attacked by rights activists.
It is a key international legal principle that punishment must be commensurable with the crime it has been meted out for, McFaul said. Moreover, it is untrue that the new Russian law to confer "foreign agent" status on foreign-funded nongovernmental organizations that engage in politics is effectively a replica of a U.S. law, he said.
McFaul said the Pussy Riot affair is giving rise to worldwide concerns.
He said he had heard Russian President Vladimir Putin say he wanted more democratic government. McFaul said he believed Putin was telling the truth.
The ambassador also said the U.S. is making efforts to ensure that all countries comply with democratic principles.
- Jehovah 's Witness in Tajikistan sent to jail for 6 months for refusing to wear army uniform 20 October 2017, 10:27
- Interior Ministry official suggests criminalizing gay propaganda 19 October 2017, 17:00
- Prominent Tajik heart surgeon detained on suspicion of links to Salafis – media 19 October 2017, 15:53
- Moscow mufti warns that foreign radical preachers want to sway CIS Muslim space 19 October 2017, 10:07
- Metropolitan Hilarion holds up protestant missionaries as an example for Orthodox priests 18 October 2017, 17:32
- Moscow court declines defense lawyers' appeal against arrest of Christian State leader Kalinin 18 October 2017, 17:12
- Investigative Committee to investigate consolidated case against Christian State leader 18 October 2017, 15:49
- Patriarch Kirill pays attention of the participants in the Inter-Parliamentary Union Assembly to attempts of infringing canonical church in Ukraine 17 October 2017, 14:14
- Patriarch Kirill urges to base legislation on law of morals 16 October 2017, 17:17
- Metropolitan Hilarion is positive about works of priest-rapper 16 October 2017, 14:41
- Communication between people doesn't depend on political, religious differences - Putin at opening of Youth Festival in Sochi 16 October 2017, 10:29
- Christian State leader Kalinin charged with extremism 13 October 2017, 12:32
- Head of Russian Catholics speaks about confident improvement of relations with the Russian Orthodox Church 12 October 2017, 11:05
- Homes of suspected Hizb ut-Tahrir members searched in Bakhchisarai 11 October 2017, 18:59
- Metropolitan Hilarion accuses the United States of the lack of democracy 11 October 2017, 17:21
- Catholics jointly with Orthodox believers will restore Orthodox churches in Syria 09 October 2017, 11:34
- Godless society will not conquer extremism - Vatican representative in Russia 06 October 2017, 18:48
- Religious leaders' dialogue promotes peaceful Karabakh settlement - head of Muslim Board of Caucasus 04 October 2017, 17:58
- Son of Russia's chief rabbi is involved in uniting Jews in Crimea 04 October 2017, 15:12
- Priest is not allowed to Russian pilot Yaroshenko in American prison 04 October 2017, 10:00
- Ingusheti preacher in averted assassination attempt already survived 03 October 2017, 11:47
- Russian Orthodox Church welcomes softened U.S. stance on freedom of conscience in Russia 03 October 2017, 10:00
- Attempt on life of religious figure averted in Ingushetia 02 October 2017, 13:31
- State Duma deputies who watched Matilda see it as movie, give filmmaker right to realize idea 29 September 2017, 18:05
- Patriarch Kirill equals insulting believers' feelings to extremism 29 September 2017, 15:19
- Patriarch Kirill positively evaluates relations between Uzbekistan's Muslims, Orthodox 29 September 2017, 13:39
- Lukashenko suggests organizing meeting between Patriarch Kirill, pope in Minsk 28 September 2017, 13:59
- Metropolitan Hilarion draws pope's attention to discrimination threat to canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church 28 September 2017, 10:11
- Syrian authorities are doing everything to protect Christians – Russian MP 28 September 2017, 10:07
- Uzbek leader plans to meet with Patriarch Kirill 28 September 2017, 10:04