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Pussy Riot Member Declares Hunger Strike

Monday Sep 23, 2013
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One of the imprisoned members of the Russian punk group Pussy Riot says she is beginning a hunger strike to protest harsh working conditions and threats to her life.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova is serving a two-year sentence for hooliganism. She and two other group members were arrested in 2012 when Pussy Riot made a brief, unauthorized performance in Moscow’s main Orthodox cathedral denouncing Vladimir Putin.

In a letter published Monday on the group’s blog, Tolokonnikova says inmates in her prison are forced to work up to 17 hours a day in a shop that makes police uniforms.

She also says the prison’s deputy warden threatened her last month, saying "Things never will be bad for you because there is nothing bad in the next world."

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