Russian ombudsman pledges to follow Pussy Riot case

Vladimir Lukin file photo

(Interfax – Moscow, November 12, 2013) Pussy Riot punk group member Nadezhda Tolokonnikova has been placed at the medical unit of a prison colony in the Krasnoyarsk Region, human rights ombudsman Vladimir Lukin told Russian Interfax news agency.

“Tolokonnikova has arrived in the Krasnoyarsk Region, where she will serve the remainder of the sentence. As I have been told, at her own request she has been placed at the medical unit,” Lukin said, quoting information received from the Justice Ministry and the Federal Penal Service.

Lukin said he had sent inquiries to these departments about Tolokonnikova.

“Under the law, in the next few days has lawyers and relatives must be informed about her whereabouts,” Lukin said.

“We know that Tolokonnikova had asked to be placed in another colony. This has been done. The authorities are saying that, in accordance with the law, she has been sent closer to the place of residence,” Lukin said.

“Her living conditions will be studied by us later. In general, the conditions in Krasnoyarsk colonies, as our ongoing research shows, are quite tolerable. This is not the worst colony,” Lukin said.

According to him, the public is interested in the situation in colonies, and, in particular, in the Tolokonnikova case. “The situation will be studied with the help of public monitoring commissions,” Lukin said. [passage omitted]

[Tolokonnikova, together with fellow group member Mariya Alekhina, are serving two-year prison terms for an anti-Putin performance in Moscow’s Christ the Saviour Cathedral in 2012. They are due for release in March.]