The freed members of the Russian punk group Pussy Riot said they will give up their famous brand and launch a human rights project to help prisoners.

“We are no longer Pussy Riot,” said Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, one of the two girls released from jail earlier this week under an amnesty.

“We can promote our ideas without giving any performances,” the other girl, Maria Alyokhina added. “And we will never play any shows for money.”

Speaking at their first press conference in Moscow on Friday, the girls said they were planning to set up a non-governmental human rights group called “Justice Zone.”

The two members of the rock band had served 21 months of their two-year sentences for performing a musical punk prayer in Russia’s main Christian Orthodox Church, asking Virgin Mary to get rid of Vladimir Putin, who was about to reclaim the post of President at the time.

Sounding defiant, the girls said they did not regret their church performance and their attitude to Mr. Putin had not changed.

“We still would like to do what we said in our punk prayer – get rid of the political system he has built.”

Ms. Tolokonnikova and Ms. Alyokhina said they were looking to collaborate with former oil tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky, who was released last week after ten years in prison, even though they were not ready to take money from him. “Khodorkovsky is important for us as a very strong and resilient person,” Ms. Tolokonnikova said. The girls ruled out emigration.

“We will not leave Russia. We have a lot of work to do here,” Ms. Tolokonnikova said.

RELATED NEWS

Pussy Riot members set freeDecember 23, 2013

More In: World | International | News