U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power Wants To Join Pussy Riot

  @ericbrownzzz on February 06 2014 12:39 PM
  • U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power
    U.S. Ambassador Samantha Power speaks to the press following a the UN Security Council meeting at the United Nations Headquarters in New York Reuters
  • Pussy Riot Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina (L)
    Members of Russian punk rock band Pussy Riot Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina (L) arrive for the inaugural Prudential Eye Awards in Singapore Jan.18, 2014. Pussy Riot has been nominated in the digital or video category for their performances, including "Punk Prayer". Reuters/Edgar Su
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U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power is such a big fan of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot that she wants to go on tour with them, she joked on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, Power met with Pussy Riot members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina, who were recently released from a Russian prison after staging a protest against Russian President Vladimir Putin inside a Moscow cathedral. Power, enamored with the band’s advocacy of human rights, tweeted a photo calling them “brave troublemakers.”

The tweet sparked some backlash from the Russian ambassador to the U.N., Vitaly Churkin. Pussy Riot’s anti-Putin stance is considerably less popular in Russia, leading Churkin to quip, “She has not joined the band?” at a Wednesday briefing.

“I would expect her to invite them to perform at the National Cathedral in Washington,” Churkin said pointedly, according to Reuters. Referring obliquely to the performance that got the group jailed for "hooliganism," the ambassador said, “Maybe they could arrange a world tour for them, you know. St Peter’s Cathedral in Rome, then maybe in Mecca in Saudi Arabia, ending up with a gala concert at the Wailing Wall in Jerusalem. So if Ambassador Power fell short, I would be disappointed.”

Power responded by doubling down on her support for Pussy Riot, stating that she would absolutely join the band if the offer was made and adding a hashtag referring to a Moscow prison. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ironically, as Power expresses her desire to join Pussy Riot, it’s unclear if Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina are still part of the band. Five anonymous members of the “female separatist” punk collective signed a blog post asking that Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina no longer be associated with the group.

According to the Hollywood Reporter’s translation, the anonymous members of Pussy Riot stated that they are on “different sides of the barricade” and that we are no longer [Tolokonnikova and Alyokhina], and they are no longer Pussy Riot.”

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