Punk activist Maria Alyokhina drives 1,000 km to reach UK after being stopped at border

A member of the protest band Pussy Riot has smuggled herself out of Russia after being barred by the government from travelling to perform at the Edinburgh festival fringe.

Maria Alyokhina, one of three members of Pussy Riot who stood trial in 2012 for a “punk prayer” at a Moscow church, was stopped by Russian border guards and told she could not leave the country. The reason given was that she had refused to serve a community service sentence for a separate protest held against Russia’s powerful Federal Security Service.

Related: Pussy Riot protesters sentenced to jail for World Cup final pitch invasion

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