Jan. 16 - Although a Russian court rejects Pussy Riot member Maria Alyokhina's bid for release, balaclava clad supporters still chant for her freedom. John Russell reports.
Donning balaclavas and chanting "Free Pussy Riot," protesters rallied for Pussy Riot punk band member Maria Alyokhina's freedom in Los Angeles, one of the many rallies taking place around the world on Wednesday (January 16). SOUNDBITE Anji Williams, Pussy Riot supporter, saying (English): "I went to Russia recently and was meeting with the Pussy Riot and Free Pussy Riot people and we took 27 pairs of Levis, which we spray painted 'I am Pussy Riot' in solidarity with them." The singer lost an appeal to a Russian court on Wednesday (January 16) to be freed from prison and defer her sentence to care for her five-year-old son. The 24-year-old is serving a two-year sentence for a protest against President Vladimir Putin in Moscow's main cathedral. Alyokhina and two band mates were convicted of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred for their "punk prayer," which was criticized by Putin and cast by the Russian Orthodox Church as part of a concerted attack on the country's main faith. The United States and Europe have called the two-year Pussy Riot sentences excessive.