Supporters of Russian Punk Band Arrested

Activists held a "punk" prayer session to support a Russian band jailed after criticizing Vladimir Putin

By Katherine Creag
|  Friday, Aug 17, 2012  |  Updated 2:28 PM EDT
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Supporters of Russian Punk Band Arrested

AP

Protesters are arrested during a demonstration in front of the Russian consulate in support of Russian punk band Pussy Riot on Friday.

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Three people were arrested Friday at the Russian consulate in Manhattan during protests over the sentencing of a Russian punk band on charges of hooliganism.

The trial, which drew international outrage as an emblem of Russia's intolerance of dissent, sparked a wave of protests around the world in support of the feminist rockers, who have been dubbed prisoners of conscience by international rights groups.

The three members of the band Pussy Riot were arrested in March after a guerrilla performance in Moscow's main cathedral, where they sang a "punk prayer" pleading for the Virgin Mary to save Russia from Vladimir Putin, who was elected to a third new term as Russia's president two weeks later.

In New York, Occupy Wall Street supporters and other activists held a "punk" prayer session outside of St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral on the Upper East Side Friday morning. Demonstrators then moved on to the nearby Consulate General of the Russian Federation for a "musical masquerade party."

Police arrested the three demonstrators outside the consulate after an NYPD sergeant warned them over a bullhorn that if they did not remove their masks they would be arrested for loitering.

Supporters of the band are also planning a rally in Times Square at 1 p.m.

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