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The Finnish-Russian Civic Forum strives to promote cooperation between the peoples of Finland and Russia by supporting civic initiatives for democracy, human rights, and freedom of speech.



“I Love Russia, But I Hate Putin”


In an interview with Spiegel, Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, member of the Russian feminist punk collective, Pussy Riot, discussed the group’s political aims, why she believed there were limits to Vladimir Putin’s power, and how the “fight for our ideas and values” would continue. She said it was “not me, but the authorities who must be afraid.”



Dirty Tricks in Russian Media


A Finnish professor who voiced solidarity with the Pussy Riot punk band became a target of wild allegations in Russian media. Why did Russian media report that the professor had taken a jerry can full of urine to Helsinki’s main Orthodox cathedral? What did the professor think about the whole affair? Heidi Laaksonen interviewed Teivo Teivainen, Professor of World Politics at Helsinki University, on YLE’s Puheen Päivä programme on 24 August 2012. Below, edited and translated excerpts from the interview:


Pussy Riot Hits Putin Where It Hurts


Despite the fact that this trial sought to portray Pussy Riot as a trio of Satanic lesbians – the judge said they were peddling “homosexual propaganda,” – their real crime was hitting Vladimir Putin in the one place he’s seldom hit: His cynical manipulation of Russian Orthodoxy. The clerical establishment is barely distinguishable from an apparatus of state security. Russia’s brand of orthodoxy is based on the concept that Moscow is the “Third Rome” and on a belief in Russian uniqueness. Being “unique,” Russia sees itself as surrounded by numerous enemies that the FSB must combat. The FSB helps to protect the Orthodox sphere of influence against Western proselytising, and in return the Church blesses the security service in its struggles with enemies of the state.


Free Pussy Riot!

Tukimielenosoitus Pussy Riotin kolmen jäsenen puolesta järjestetään Helsingissä Venäjän suurlähetystön edessä Tehtaankadulla perjantaina 17. elokuuta 2012 kello 12:30 eli tunti ennen Moskovassa langetettavaa tuomiota. Ryhmän virallinen kannatusosoite löytyy osoitteesta freepussyriot.org. Sieltä löytyy artikkeleita, uutisia, ryhmän jäsenien kirjeitä ja paljon muuta. Toivomme sivistynyttä ja rauhallista sananvapauden puolustamista kaikille!


Finnish Fools and Muscovite Mudslingers


The Swedish journalist, Kalle Kniivilä, has written an analysis of the campaign of lies that have been hurled against Teivo Teivainen, Professor of World Politics at the University of Helsinki, following his participation at an event in support of the members of the Russian feminist punk band, Pussy Riot, now being tried in a medieval show trial in Moscow. Below, a translation of Mr Kniivilä’s original article:


Prick Riot

Pussy Riot members accused of blasphemy and hatred of religion? […] The true blasphemy is the state accusation itself, formulating as a crime of religious hatred something which was clearly a political act of protest against the ruling clique. […] What is Pussy Riot’s modestly obscene provocation in a church compared to the the gigantic obscene provocation of the state apparatus which mocks any notion of decent law and order?


“Богородица, Путина прогони”


При внимательном рассмотрении в действиях Pussy Riot несложно разглядеть антирелигиозный мотив, причем достаточно серьезный, чтобы переквалифицировать обвинение в их адрес по экстремистской ст. 282. Pussy Riot определенно разжигают религиозную рознь, натравливая святого одной религии на верховное божество другой. Что это за вера такая? Это вера, которая насаждается в России с 1999 года. Священные изображения божества висят в кабинете каждого служителя религиозного культа. Федеральные телеканалы вместо новостных и аналитических передач ведут летопись его подвигов, как бы ни называлась в данный момент его мирская должность. Во время бедствий оно спускается с неба и приносит спасительные миллиарды помощи. Зовут его Путин.