Sochi 2014 Olympics: IOC Says Pussy Riot Punk Group Attacks 'Unsettling'

The International Olympic Committee has declared attacks on the Pussy Riot Punk group in the Sochi 2014 Olympics as "very unsettling."

Feb 20 2014, 6:56pm CST | by

Sochi 2014 Olympics: IOC Says Pussy Riot Punk Group Attacks 'Unsettling'
Photo Credit: Getty Images

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has declared attacks on the Pussy Riot Punk group in the Sochi 2014 Olympics as "very unsettling." 

An Feb. 20 ESPN update reveals the sentiments of IOC spokesman Mark Adams on the matter:

"The International Olympic Committee says images of the attack on the Pussy Riot punk group in Sochi 'are very unsettling.'

"IOC spokesman Mark Adams says the governor of the Krasnodar region has apologized for the attack and is investigating.

"Adams says it's a matter not directly related to the Sochi Games but he 'found the pictures and the video very unsettling.'

"On Wednesday, Cossack militia attacked the group with horsewhips as the artists tried to perform under a sign advertising the Sochi Olympics.

"The performance-art collective, made up of a loose grouping of feminists, has called for a boycott, arguing that Putin has exceeded its authority and is restricting human rights. Pussy Riot's Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alekhina spent nearly two years in prison on charges of hooliganism for their protest in Moscow's main cathedral in 2012.

"Pussy Riot's video, called 'Putin will teach you how to love the motherland,' was posted on YouTube and features a song and footage of the band's protests. Members told a news conference their treatment in Sochi is symptomatic of dissent being stifled in Russia."

Tolokonnikova said this was an outright violation of human rights. 

"The Olympics has turned the police state into a total police state and the authoritarian regime into a totalitarian regime with preventive arrests. The Olympics has created an environment of sweeping violations of human rights in Russia. We are banned from speaking out there."

Aside from whipping the group, Cossack militia also removed the members' ski masks in an altercation which occurred at a Sochi restaurant roughly 30 kilometers from the Olympics site, per CBC. 

The fracas lasted less than five minutes with one male member of the Pussy Riot group having a bloodied face. No arrests were made. 

However, Tolokonnikova and Alekhina were detained on Tuesday but were eventually released. She said she and her fellow Pussy Riot members have been constantly shadowed.

"We members of Pussy Riot have been here since late Sunday and we were constantly detained since then. We are constantly surrounded by people, not you journalists, but people who are shadowing us, following our every move and looking for any excuse to detain us."

Her husband, Pyotr Verzilov, said,"Obviously they are trying to prevent us from having a comfortable time in Sochi by doing all these constant checkups and detentions."

International pop sensation Madonna -- "the band's highest-profile fan," per the ESPN update -- tweeted,"Are you kidding me? Are the police in Russia actually whipping Pussy Riot for making music on the streets?.."

Adams also told ESPN the IOC is asking for more details regarding the Pussy Riot controversy but labeled it as an issue for the local government. 

 

 
 
 


Poch de la Rosa follows all major U.S. sports: NFL, MLB, NBA, NHL and the NCAA. His favorite teams are the Colts, Braves, Pacers, Sharks and Irish, respectively.

 

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