Maria Alyokhina of anti-Putin band Pussy Riot falls ill during trial

Members of Russian punk band Pussy Riot Maria Alyokhina, left, Yekaterina Samutsevich, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova,right, watch their trial from behind bars in a Moscow court. Source: AP

Original Source / Herald Sun: http://www.heraldsun.com.au/news/world/member-of-anti-putin-band-pussy-riot-falls-ill-during-trail/story-fnd134gw-1226440753781

ONE of the members of an all-girl punk band who performed a song against Russian President Vladimir Putin in a landmark Moscow church has required medical attention during their high-profile trial.

Court officials and lawyers said the third day of witness testimony was interrupted and medics called in when one of the young women collapsed after the group complained of a lack of food and sleep during the trial.

“Maria Alyokhina suffered a severe drop in blood sugar levels this morning. This is linked to the fact that she is a vegan,” defence attorney Nikolai Polozov told journalists after three ambulances arrived at the court.

“All three ambulances were called for her. They gave her the necessary injections.”

As the women were taken into court in handcuffs for the hearings to resume, Alyokhina told journalists that she felt “all right.”

The defence lawyers have repeatedly complained to the judge that the women are being woken up at 5.00am at their detention centre to attend the closely watched hearings and are not fed for periods of more than 12 hours.

“They are brought back to their temporary detention centre after midnight, are left without dinner and can only get a few hours of sleep,” Mr Polozov told the Interfax news agency.

Alyokhina told the court on Monday evening that “my head is spinning,” as the hearing went on to almost 10pm.

The three women – who face up to seven years in jail if found guilty of hooliganism – testified on Monday that they had wanted to change Russia with their action but could have made an “ethical” mistake by offending worshippers.

The controversial case has won them supporters among major Western stars including pop icon Sting and writer and comedian Stephen Fry and was condemned on Tuesday by the US State Department.

They were arrested in March and charged with hooliganism motivated by religious hatred of Orthodox believers in a case highlighting the powerful Church’s growing dominance under Mr Putin’s 12-year rule.

Russian Orthodox Church leaders have demanded strict punishment of the band members’ actions and have been backed in their condemnation by leading members of the country’s political elite.

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s