Russians Have No Respect for Pussy Riot, Poll Says

Russians have no respect for Pussy Riot, a poll from Levada Center indicates.

Out of a sample of 1,601 people surveyed in 130 urban centers, not a single respondent said they respected the band.

In August 2012, band members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Maria Alyokhina were sentenced to two years in prison for their "Punk Prayer" at Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral last year that denounced President Vladimir Putin.

Of the 78 percent of Russians who knew about Pussy Riot's act of defiance, 27 percent expressed hostility toward the band and 19 percent said they felt irritated, according to the poll, which was published Thursday.

Only 6 percent sympathized with the band.

Slightly less than a quarter said there was nothing positive to be said about the girls.

When asked what motivated the band's actions, 23 percent said they were directed against the church as an institution and against believers, Interfax reported Thursday.

Seventeen percent felt the stunt protested the participation of the Russian Orthodox Church in politics.

As for the band's punishment, more than half thought Pussy Riot had been given a fair trial, while 22 percent said the verdict was politically motivated.

No statistical margin of error was given for the Levada Center poll.