Pussy Riot has apparently disbanded. Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alyokhina, two members of the punk band who were released from prison on Monday, announced plans to create a crowd-funded human rights organization, Zona Prava ("Justice Zone"), in their first press conference since their release and subsequent reunion. Naturally, the focus of the new organization will be the protection of prison inmate rights.

“We can promote our cause without playing any shows," Alyokhina said. "And we will never play any shows for money.”

“We are not Pussy Riot now,” Tolokonnikova added. “We feel a huge responsibility for people who are in prisons."

The two will remain in Russia to spearhead this effort, despite the awareness that they will be under scrutiny from the government especially after the 2014 Winter Olympics. Prior to their release, they were serving two-year sentences for a "punk prayer" they performed at Moscow’s Christ the Savior Cathedral in February 2012. The prayer was an act of opposition towards Russia's President, Vladimir Putin.

A third member of the band, Yekaterina Samutsevich, was released on probation on October 2012 after winning an appeal. “If she wants to help us with what we’re doing now, we will only be glad,” Alyokhina said.

[via The Fader]

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