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Russia: Pussy Riot protestors arrested for World Cup pitch demonstration; FIFA issues public statement

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Company response
13 August 2018

FIFA statement on the procedures involving the four activists who invaded the pitch at the 2018 FIFA World Cup final match

FIFA has been closely following the developments in relation to the four activists who entered the pitch at the 2018 FIFA World Cup final match between the French and Croatian national teams and caused a halt to the game.

While FIFA generally strongly condemns such behavior, we also expect authorities to ensure that any sanction against individuals is lawful and that everyone receives a fair trial. FIFA has therefore consistently urged the Russian authorities to uphold internationally recognized human rights in any activity related to the 2018 FIFA World Cup, including in particular the principles enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights and other human rights instruments the Russian Federation has committed itself to be bound by.

FIFA has taken note of the release of the four activists on 31 July 2018 and of the procedures involving additional charges. FIFA continues to engage with its counterparts in Russia on this matter, in accordance with the commitments enshrined in article 3 of the FIFA Statutes, FIFA’s Human Rights Policy, and the recently published FIFA statement on human rights defenders and media representatives.

Article
17 July 2018

Pussy Riot members jailed for World Cup final pitch invasion

Author: Associated Press

The four protesters who barged onto the field at the World Cup final in Moscow have been sentenced to 15 days in jail. A court on Monday sentenced them after finding them guilty of violating the law on behaviour of sports events spectators. They were also banned from attending sports events for three years.

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Article
16 July 2018

Pussy Riot issue updates on World Cup pitch invasion fallout

Author: Vivian Yeung, Crack Magazine

[Pussy Riot] have issued a series of social media posts detailing the aftermath of the invasion via Facebook. They confirmed that four Pussy Riot members spent the night at the police station with no access to sleeping or washing facilities. Shortly after, a video surfaced of two of the members being interrogated by Russian police. According to this tweet by Max Seddon, one of the police officers can be heard saying, “It’s a shame it’s not 1937 anymore”. They were also initially denied access to their lawyer, Nikolay Vasilyev.

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Article
15 July 2018

World Cup 2018: The Moral Clarity of Pussy Riot’s Protest

Author: Masha Gessen, The New Yorker

[I]n the fifty-second minute of the final game of the World Cup, four women dressed in Russian-police uniforms charged the field, briefly disrupting the match. They were members of the Russian protest-art group Pussy Riot.

In Putin’s Russia, dozens of people are behind bars for political crimes... [and] unlike the 2014 Olympics, in Sochi, where Pussy Riot also protested, the World Cup has occasioned little criticism or reflection from Western politicians or media.

[Their] list of demands:

1. Free all political prisoners.

2. Stop jailing people for social-media “likes.”

3. Stop illegal arrests at protests.

4. Allow political competition.

5. Stop fabricating criminal cases and putting people in jail for no reason.

6. Turn the earthly policeman into a Heavenly Policeman.

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