Report: Pussy Riot member asks for solitary confinement

Story highlights

  • Maria Alyokhina and another punk band member were sentenced in August
  • They are serving their two-year prison sentences in a penal colony far from Moscow
  • Alyokhina has requested solitary confinement, Russia's state news agency reports
  • It cites prison officials as saying she has "strained relations" with other inmates

One of the members of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot serving a two-year prison sentence has asked to be transferred to solitary confinement because of "strained relations" with other inmates, state media reported Friday.

Maria Alyokhina, 24, and fellow band member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 23, were sentenced in August for performing a song critical of President Vladimir Putin in one of the Russian Orthodox Church's most important cathedrals in February.

They are serving their sentences at a penal colony in Perm, about 1,000 kilometers (700 miles) east of Moscow.

The state-run news agency Ria Novosti cited unidentified prison officials as saying that Alyokhina had made the transfer request. The agency noted that Alyokhina, a vegan, had previously complained about the meat-based diet at the prison colony.

Yekaterina Samutsevich, a third member of the band who was sentenced with Alyokhina and Tolokonnikova, was freed from prison last month.

Member of Pussy Riot band released
Member of Pussy Riot band released

    JUST WATCHED

    Member of Pussy Riot band released

MUST WATCH

Member of Pussy Riot band released 02:54
 Freed Pussy Riot member speaks
 Freed Pussy Riot member speaks

    JUST WATCHED

    Freed Pussy Riot member speaks

MUST WATCH

Freed Pussy Riot member speaks 09:57

Following her release on a suspended sentence, Samutsevich vowed to continue the kind of political protest act that led to their imprisonment.

Footage of the brief but provocative protest action attracted worldwide attention after it was posted online.

It showed the band members, their faces shrouded by balaclavas, screaming "Mother Mary, please drive Putin away" inside Christ Savior Cathedral in Moscow, outraging many of the Russia church's faithful

The three women, who were arrested shortly after the protest act, were convicted of hooliganism. Two other members of the all-female group have fled Russia.

Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina are expected to try to take their case to the European Court of Human Rights.

        Pussy Riot trial

      • Two years for Russian punk group

        A judge blasts three members of Russian punk rock band Pussy Riot for performing a song critical of Vladimir Putin in a Moscow church.
      • Pussy Riot supporters took to Twitter to vent their anger against the band's two-year sentence.

        Supporters vent anger on Twitter

        The Twittersphere lit up with pictures and messages of support from around the world after three band members were jailed for "hooliganism."
      • Supporters stand near the street holding a sign as embers of the band 'Brenda' perform in a dirt lot across the street from the Russian Embassy in Washington on August 10, 2012 in a solidarity concert for the Russian punk rock group Pussy Riot. Three members of the female band Pussy Riot are currently on trial in Russia and face a three-year sentence with the possibility of hard labor for performing a protest song in a Moscow cathedral last February. AFP PHOTO/Paul J. Richards (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/GettyImages)

        D.C. punk bands rock for Pussy Riot

        Tents, food trucks, art work and posters with "Free Pussy Riot" covered bus stops and real estate board during a concert in D.C. in support of the arrested Russian band.
      • Putin asks court to show leniency

        Russian President Vladimir Putin asks a court to show leniency for three members of the punk rock band Pussy Riot charged with hooliganism.
      • Members of the all-girl punk band 'Pussy Riot' Nadezhda Tolokonnikova (L), Maria Alyokhina (R) and Yekaterina Samutsevich (C), sit behind bars during a court hearing in Moscow on July 30, 2012. In February, five women walked silently into Moscow's Church of Christ the Saviour before clambering over railings, pulling on balaclavas and yelling out a protest song against Vladimir Putin. The 'punk prayer' by the all-woman group Pussy Riot lasted around a minute. Three women arrested in March over the incident face up to seven years in a prison colony after being charged with hooliganism and have already spent four months awaiting trial . AFP PHOTO / ANDREY SMIRNOV (Photo credit should read ANDREY SMIRNOV/AFP/GettyImages)

        Celebrities back Russian punk singers

        Music stars including Pete Townshend of The Who, Alex Kapranos of Franz Ferdinand and Corinne Bailey Rae called on Russia to free members of the Pussy Riot punk band.
      • How to get arrested in Russia

        Here's a clue: Walk into a cathedral wearing a neon mask, stand on the pulpit and scream songs with lyrics like "Virgin Mary drive Putin away!"