Russia bans access to Pussy Riot videos

AFP
AFP
Maria Alyokhina (left) and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova were given a two-year prison sentence for the cathedral performance
View photos

The two jailed members of "Pussy Riot" Maria Alyokhina (left) and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova sit in a glass-walled cage during their appeals hearing at a Moscow courthouse in October 2012. A Russian court has issued an order to limit access to the videos of performances by the jailed feminist punk band -- ruling the films to be extremist.

A Russian court issued an order Thursday to limit access to the videos of performances by the jailed feminist punk band Pussy Riot, ruling the films to be extremist.

A Moscow court declared the videos, including the infamous "Punk Prayer" in the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour, to be "extremist" and ordered to "restrict access" to the films, Russian news agencies reported.

The judge also listed as subject to restriction the official Pussy Riot webpage and the band's popular Livejournal blog, the location of most of its manifestos and photos from other actions.

The decision supported the position of Moscow's prosecutors who told the court that linguistic experts found the clips offensive.

Materials officially branded "extremist" are put on a blacklist kept by the Russian justice ministry.

Currently the list has about 1,500 items, mostly related to banned religious and ultra-nationalist groups or those deemed to have a fascist ideology.

Two band members are currently serving two year prison sentences after their cathedral performance was ruled an act of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred.

The video of the February Punk Prayer has gone viral and been viewed on YouTube several million times.

Pussy Riot also sang a song "Putin Got Scared" on Red Square, and staged an illicit concert on the roof of a Moscow prison for those detained at a protest rally last December.

The band's Yekaterina Samutsevich, who has been convicted for the church stunt but freed with a suspended sentence, called Thursday's ruling a "direct recognition of artistic censorship" in Russia.

By using Yahoo you agree that Yahoo and partners may use Cookies for personalisation and other purposes