Pussy Riot's Maria Alekhina Hospitalized After Staging Hunger Strike

Pussy Riot's Maria Alekhina Hospitalized After Staging Hunger Strike
The struggle continues for incarcerated Pussy Riot member Maria Alekhina. She lost an appeal to defer her two-year prison sentence earlier this year, and now she's been hospitalized after staging a hunger strike.

According to Pyotr Verzilov, who visited the prison in the town of Berezniki and is the husband of one of Alekhina's bandmates, the imprisoned musician was transferred to a hospital today (May 28), the Associated Press reports. She began a hunger strike last Wednesday (May 22) after not being allowed to attend her own parole hearing.

AP reports that Alekhina has claimed that she is being persecuted. She alleges that prison officials cracked down on security in advance of her hearing in an attempt to turn inmates against her. She has complained that authorities intentionally placed her with violent criminals and previously spent five months in solitary confinement.

Alekhina was jailed following a political protest at Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral last year. Three of Pussy Riot's members were sentenced; Yekaterina Samutsevich was later released, but Nadezhda Tolokonnikova is still locked up.