Paul McCartney writes in support of Pussy Riot

Associated Press
FILE - In this Monday Oct. 1, 2012 file photo, feminist punk group Pussy Riot members, from left, Maria Alekhina, Yekaterina Samutsevich and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova sit in a glass cage at a court room in Moscow, Russia. Alekhina went on hunger strike Wednesday, May 22, 2013, in protest at not being allowed to attend her own parole hearing in Perm province. In letters dated Monday and posted online by the group's supporters, McCartney asks for parole to be granted to Maria Alekhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, currently serving two-year sentences for an impromptu protest in Moscow's main cathedral. The judge in Mordovia province to whom the Beatles frontman Paul McCartney addressed two letters in Pussy Riot support, denied Tolokonnikova parole last month. (AP Photo/Sergey Ponomarev, file)
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FILE - In this Monday Oct. 1, 2012 file photo, feminist punk group Pussy Riot members, from left, Maria …

MOSCOW (AP) — Beatles frontman Paul McCartney has asked a Russian judge to release members of the Pussy Riot punk group from prison.

In letters dated Monday and posted online by the group's supporters, McCartney asks for parole to be granted to Maria Alekhina and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, currently serving two-year sentences for an impromptu protest in Moscow's main cathedral.

McCartney wrote that he was making the request "in a spirit of friendship for my many Russian acquaintances who, like me, believe in treating people - all people, with compassion and kindness."

Alekhina went on hunger strike Wednesday in protest at not being allowed to attend her own parole hearing in Perm province. The judge in Mordovia province to whom McCartney addressed both letters denied Tolokonnikova parole last month.

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