American media gives Putin too much credit: Russian activist

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Moscow, July 17 (IANS) A member from the Russian punk band and activist group Pussy Riot said President Vladimir Putin’s authoritarian rule is actually less organised and effective than that portrayed by the American media.

Wearing a mask for “artistic as well as security reasons”, Nadya Tolokonnikova told CNN on Monday that the Putin government was mostly full of kleptocrats interested in increasing their own wealth.

“American media gives too much credit to President Putin and his fellows because you perceive them as an organised unit,” she said.

“Well they are not effective. In fact they are a bunch of people who care mostly about their money … they are just not effective.”

Tolokonnikova was imprisoned by the Russian government for two years along with another Pussy Riot member in 2012 for performing an an anti-Putin protest song called “Punk Prayer” in a Moscow cathedral.

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On Sunday, Pussy Riot claimed responsibility for a group of protesters who took the field during the final FIFA World Cup match in Moscow, indicating in a statement that the field invasion was staged to bring attention to political injustices in Russia.

Reflecting on the friendly words exchanged by the two leaders earlier on Monday during their first official summit in Helsinki, Finland, the Russian activist said she did not give much credence to what was said.

“They just met each other,” she told CNN.

“They said stupid things to each other, and personally for me it was pretty disturbing to hear Trump’s statement about Putin, that he’s completely innocent about interfering in the American elections.”

“If I would be President Trump I would try consider what my intelligence services are giving to me, because otherwise he’s not running the country, he’s just being an idiot.”

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She blamed the weakened Russian economy as proof of the government’s incompetence and suggested that if she had attempted to interfere with the American elections, she might have been able to accomplish more than the Russian intelligence services.

“If you take a look at the Russian economy you will see they are not effective,” she said.

“I am not saying that they didn’t interfere in your elections. They did. They might have done it better. Like if I would have (laughs) this goal to make it better, I would do it better.”

–IANS

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