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Court to Decide on Banning Pussy Riot Video

A Moscow court will hold a preliminary hearing to determine whether a video recording of Pussy Riot's controversial anti-Kremlin performance in Christ the Savior Cathedral contains extremist content.

Should the clip be deemed extremist, the Zamoskvoretsky District Court can take steps to ban the video, including domestic obliging video-hosting sites to delete the clip from their servers.

During the hearing scheduled for Nov. 20, the court will also decide whether to allow Pussy Riot band member Yekaterina Samutsevich to take part in the case, Interfax reported.

Samutsevich's two-year prison sentence — which she received along with two other female band members in August — was suspended in October after her lawyer managed to prove that she did not actually take part in the February "punk prayer."

Samutsevich has said that she wants to participate in the Nov. 20 hearing because the outcome of the case could affect her appeal against her earlier sentencing by Moscow's Khamovnichesky District Court.

She also said she feels the need to "defend the video," according to Interfax.

The latest extremism case comes after a lawmaker from the nationalist Liberal Democratic Party, Alexander Starovoitov, sent a request to the Prosecutor General's Office to run a check into the video of the band's cathedral performance, Komsomolskaya Pravda reported.

Prosecutors then forwarded the case to the courts for consideration.

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