Musicians Sign an Open Letter Calling for Pussy Riot Release

artist: Pussy Riot date: 07/23/2013 category: music news
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Musicians Sign an Open Letter Calling for Pussy Riot Release
More than 100 musicians joined a worldwide call for the release of the two jailed members of the Russian feminist punk group Pussy Riot ahead of their parole appeal hearings this week by signing an open letter calling for their release. The letter was created at It says: "Dear Masha and Nadia, "As the one-year anniversary of your trial approaches, we are writing to assure you that, around the world, people are both still thinking of you and working for your release. Although you were the most visible of the protesters, we know that there were many other young people who have suffered in the protests, about whom we are also very concerned. But, in many ways, through your imprisonment, you have come to represent them. "Many artists voiced their concern when these charges were first brought against you, we had every hope that the authorities, in dealing with you, would show some understanding, a sense of proportion, even some of the wonderful Russian sense of humour, but none of the above were forthcoming. "The impact of your shockingly unjust trial and imprisonment has spread far and wide. Especially among your fellow artists, musicians and citizens around the world, including the many parents who feel your anguish at being separated from your children. While understanding the sensitivities of protesting in a place of worship, we ask that the Russian authorities review these harsh sentences, so that you may return to your children, your families and your lives. "The right to freedom of expression and dissent is a legitimate one and essential in any kind of democracy. You have been accused of what could be described as 'a victimless' crime, but in our opinion, in a just society, there can be no crime where there is no identifiable 'victim.' "Your strength, bravery and fearlessness are an inspiration to us all." The letter was signed by a bunch of outstanding musicians, including likes of Bryan Adams, Animal Collective, Anti-Flag, Arcade Fire, Arch Enemy, Joan Baez, Jeff Beck, Bjork, the Clash, Coldplay, Django Django, Franz Ferdinand, Foster the People, Sir Bob Geldof, Debbie Harry, PJ Harvey, Sir Elton John, Mark Knopfler, Sean Lennon, Sir Paul McCartney, Massive Attack, Moby, Tom Morello, Alanis Morissette, Karen O, Yoko Ono, Ozzy Osbourne, Phoenix, Portishead, Portugal. The Man, Radiohead, Rise Against, Scissor Sisters, Patti Smith, Bruce Springsteen, Sting, Michael Stipe, Pete Townshend, U2 and Eddie Vedder among others. In February 2012, members of Pussy Riot performed mere seconds of a protest song in Moscow's main Orthodox cathedral that was critical of authorities in Russia. Last year the group was supported by many famous musicians, including Madonna, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Sir Paul McCartney and Bjork. One of arrested band members, Yekaterina Samutsevich, was released in October 2012.
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