Statues of Belfast say 'Free Pussy Riot'

Amnesty International has recruited some of Belfast's best-known statues to stage a virtual demonstration in solidarity with jailed punk group Pussy Riot.

Statues and sculptures around the city staged the demonstration on Wednesday 22 August, complete with colourful crocheted balaclavas and 'Free Pussy Riot' placards.

The demonstration was one of many being staged by Amnesty International in cities around the world in defence of free speech in Russia.

Local Amnesty activists teamed up with the guerrilla knitters of S.O.C.K (Secret Outside Crocheters and Knitters) to organise the colourful protest in solidarity with jailed punk group Pussy Riot, who were sentenced to two years in a penal colony by a Moscow Court on Friday.

Patrick Corrigan, Northern Ireland Programme Director at Amnesty International, said:

"The jailed Pussy Riot members are feeling the brute force of a state intent on throttling free speech. The trial of these Women's rights's rightss rights's rights's rights's rights was politically motivated and we are calling on the Russian authorities to overturn the guilty verdict and two year jail sentence.

"Amnesty International members in Northern Ireland and throughout the world will continue to demonstrate their support for Pussy Riot and for the right to freedom of expression. Thousands have already sent Maria, Ekaterina and Nadezhda messages of support and we have announced a Pussy Riot solidarity gig in Belfast on Friday 7 September, tickets for which are now available."

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