Pussy Riot member found in Siberian Hospital as doc is shortlisted for Oscar

Posted on 4 December 2013
By Becky Baker
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Leader of punk rock protest group Pussy Riot has been found in a tuberculosis prison hospital in the Krasnoyarsk region of Siberia.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova was transferred to the hospital to have tests for ‘various conditions’ after a hunger strike.

Tolokonnikova was arrested with fellow band members Maria Alyokhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich after being charged with Hooliganism in February last year.

After entering the soleas of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow, the women performed Mother of God, Drive Putin Away in protest of Orthodox leaders support for Putin during his electoral campaign.

Mike Lerner’s 2013 documentary Pussy Riot: A Punk Prayer showed the women during court sessions and their action to appeal against their charges.

The documentary has been shortlisted in the final 15 for an Oscar nomination for Best Documentary.

From interviews with family members, the director introduced the origins of the women’s beliefs and motives in forming the band.

During their two years imprisonment activists have been campaigning on a global scale for the release of Pussy Riot.

Throughout Tolokonnikova’s three week disappearance supporters feared for her safety, due to death threats from her previous prison and Orthodox Christians.

Tolokonnikova’s husband has confirmed that he had spoken to her on the phone, and that the general condition of the hospital and her treatment had greatly improved.

The Sundance award-winning documentary was shown on the BBC Storyville series in October 2013 with positive reviews from the British public.