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The Siberian Times

Jailed Pussy Riot protester Nadezhda Tolokonnikova 'to remain in TB hospital for rest of sentence'

By The Siberian Times reporter
16 December 2013

The anti-Kremlin campaigner will serve remaining time in jail clinic in Siberia.

Tolokonnikova made allegations against her jailers in Mordovia, where she complained of a threat to kill her, and forced labour of 17 hours a day. Picture: Andrei Tolokonnikov

Russian prison officials said the 24 year old had expressed the desire to stay in the TB hospital in Krasnoyarsk pending her scheduled release in March. It remains unclear why she needs hospital treatment, and whether it is related to two hunger strikes she staged in another jail. 

She is not believed to be suffering from TB, even though she is in the prison wing of Krasnoyarsk's Tuberculosis Hospital No. 1.

The announcement her remaining in hospital comes amid two developments which could see her released earlier. One is her appeal to the Russian Supreme Court which has called for a review of her sentence, indicating it was inappropriate. The review also applies to fellow Pussy Riot member Maria Alyokhina, 25, currently serving her sentence in another jail.

The other is speculation that a current amnesty for inmates could see the pair freed in the near future. 

Jailed Pussy Riot protester Nadezhda Tolokonnikova 'to remain in TB hospital for rest of sentence'


Jailed Pussy Riot protester Nadezhda Tolokonnikova 'to remain in TB hospital for rest of sentence'

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova's husband Pyotr and daughter Gera and, below, her father Andrei. Pictures: Andrei Tolokonnikov

A Moscow court sentenced Tolokonnikova and two other Pussy Riot members to two years in a prison in August 2012 on hooliganism charges for performing a punk prayer protest against President Vladimir Putin in a Moscow cathedral. The sentence of the third participant was swiftly suspended.

Controversy surrounded Tolokonnikova after she made serious allegations against her jailers in Mordovia, where she complained of a threat to kill her, and forced labour of 17 hours a day. She staged two hunger strikes which prompted a jail switch. However, her relatives were in the dark for almost a month as she was moved to an unknown location. Eventually it was acknowledged that she had arrived at a prison hospital in Krasnoyarsk, a city four times zones east of her family and young child in Moscow. 

However, she was born in Krasnoyarsk region and her grandmother lives nearby in the city. 

Her father Andrei Tolokonnikov, who spoke to her on 6 December said: 'Nadezhda was a little sad today. But she is generally in a good mood, although she is suffering from a headache. Since she was placed in a tuberculosis clinic, I thought at first that she had TB, but it was not confirmed.'

His daughter 'likes it there', he said. 'The director of the hospital is a very good and positive man. I have met him.'

Her husband Petr Verzilov called the conditions of the jail hospital 'very good' which is different to the other jail where Tolokonnikova was kept before.

'She takes part in cultural life of the jail,' he said, ' in theatre and musical performances'.

Comments (7)

To Jeff, I'd like you to keep "peaceful protests" that spit in the face of millions in your own country, thank you.
Igor, Volokolamsk
21/12/2013 01:40
6
thank god, they are freed today.. What a coincidence that we were all just commenting on this.
john cuevas, seattale
20/12/2013 00:40
6
Igor, if you don't want news on a subject, then don't read it. The basis of a free society is for all news to be available without censorship. No one should be arrested for peaceful, non-violent protest of any kind.
Jeff, Florida, USA
19/12/2013 20:47
5
offending comments are a part of life. they should not justify a jail sentence. and yes, everyday I realize I know nothing, Less than nothing.
john cuevas, seattle, washington usa
18/12/2013 04:02
14
Nadia will be free as God intended. Blasphemy isn't singing/protesting in a church. It is acting in Gods name - God doesn't need our help! Neither is it asked for! Christ represented a challenge to the theocratic and political hierarchy of his day. You don't need to be the Messiah to challenge today corrupt self-serving hierarchies. There is no greater affront to God than for one of his children to needlessly suffer - be it in Chechnya or Syria or Alabama or anywhere. Nadia is lovely but also she is young and impulsive and passionate - these things are of creation and need to be free not in some 'TB Hospital'.
Marcus Aurelius2, Devon UK
17/12/2013 16:41
12
Would you please stop giving news on these blasphemers? It's third time in a row already and last time people clearly said they don't want it. Nobody cares.

To John, ST policy and my upbringing would keep me from offending comments, let's just say you know hilariously nothing.
Igor, Volokolamsk
17/12/2013 14:53
17
these women never should have been arrested in the first place. they are political prisoners. i wish more Russians and especially Siberians would protest this unfair, unjust sentence. Freedom of speech is suppressed in Russia, there is no question about it.
john cuevas, SEATTLE, WA
17/12/2013 09:34
14
1

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