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Pussy Riot Protest At Russian Embassy In D.C. Will Feature Musical Performances (PHOTOS) (UPDATED)

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Members of Pussy Riot, photographed on Feb. 17, 2012
Members of Pussy Riot, photographed on Feb. 17, 2012

WASHINGTON -- Political activists and punk musicians will unite outside the Russian Embassy on Friday to demand that three members of the Russian feminist punk band Pussy Riot be released from jail.

The combined protest and concert will take place from 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. outside Russia's massive embassy compound in D.C.'s Glover Park neighborhood.

Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Maria Alekhina and Yekaterina Samutsevich have been incarcerated since February after playing a provocative, anti-Putin song from the pulpit of an Orthodox church in Moscow, weeks before the Russian presidential elections.

Per a court ruling last week, the band members will be held in jail pre-trial until January 2013. If convicted of their charges of "hooliganism," the women -- two of whom have young children -- could be sentenced to seven years in prison.

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Artists and musicians in Russia and around the world have shown their support for the band in creative and sometimes provocative ways, in the style of Pussy Riot themselves. On Tuesday in St. Petersburg, an artist sewed his mouth shut to protest the musicians' imprisonment.

Amnesty International considers Pussy Riot to be prisoners of conscience and the advocacy group's U.S. chapter will manage Friday's protest, according to its website.

Amnesty International USA will lead the rally outside the embassy compound's Wisconsin Avenue gates from 4:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. Protesters will later "take the noise across the street," where local punk bands will play tributes to Pussy Riot, according to the event's Facebook page.

Participating local bands will include ska punk band Harrison Four, indie pop group Brenda and the math rockers of Show Pony. In addition to the music, the protest event page also says that "representatives from the Art and Human Rights community will speak about the case" later in the evening.

As the list of attendees climbs, notes of support have proliferated on the event's Facebook page, with messages from the American Russian-Speaking Association for Civil & Human Rights and dozens of local D.C. residents.

Local interns and other activists have also participated in a "We Are Pussy Riot" photo campaign, submitting photos of themselves wearing balaclavas like the ones the Russian rockers are known for -- they were wearing the knit-face coverings during the anti-Putin performance that prompted their arrest.

UPDATE: Protest organizers say on the event Facebook page that the concert portion of Friday's event has been cancelled because "of inclement weather in the evening and some last minute push back from DC Local Government." They say, though, that "Members of local DC bands will still be in attendance, staging a guerrilla performance of their own outside the embassy from 4:30-6." Representatives of Amnesty International, along with Philippa Hughes of Pinkline Project and Mark Andersen of Positive Force will be speaking.

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Putin will not testify at Pussy Riot trial: court

Artist sews his mouth for Pussy Riot

The Strange History of Russian Hooliganism