MOSCOW, October 23 (RIA Novosti) – Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, a member of a feminist punk band jailed for performing an anti-government protest song in a Moscow cathedral, is being transferred to a prison in the Russian republic of Chuvashia, her husband said Wednesday.
Pyotr Verzilov said on his Twitter account that Tolokonnikova is to be sent to a penitentiary facility in the town of Alatyr, which lies around 600 km east of the capital.
Federal Penitentiary Service officials could not confirm the transfer to Chuvashia, though they said Monday that she had been moved from her prison colony in the neighboring republic of Mordovia.
Tolokonnikova, 23, went on her second hunger strike in the space of a month last week in protest at her treatment at the hands of authorities in the Mordovia prison where she was being held.
The shock rocker first went on a hunger strike from September 23 to October 1 and asked for a criminal case to be initiated against the prison’s deputy warden, who she said had threatened her with murder.
The Federal Penitentiary Service said the strike was a response to prison authorities’ rejection of her demands for privileged treatment.
Three members of the Pussy Riot band were sentenced in 2012 to two years in jail (though one later had her sentence commuted to a suspended one) on charges of hooliganism motivated by religious hatred for mounting a brief but raucous performance in Moscow’s Christ the Savior Cathedral in protest at Vladimir Putin’s imminent re-election as president.
An edited video of their performance posted to the Internet caused a public outcry.
Tolokonnikova and the other jailed Pussy Riot member, Maria Alyokhina, are due to be released in March 2014.