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Pussy Riot Activist Detained Outside FSB Building Over 'Butchers' Banner

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Pussy Riot band member Maria Alyokhina was detained outside the Federal Security Service (FSB) building in central Moscow on Wednesday after unfurling a banner that read “Happy Birthday, Butchers.” 

Dec. 20 marks the 100-year anniversary of the founding of the Cheka, the notorious Soviet secret police force that orchestrated mass executions during the Russian Civil War. The date is celebrated as Security Services Day in Russia.

Police detained Alyokhina after the activist attached the birthday banner onto the FSB building, fellow activist Olga Borisova told the Mediazona news website. 

Two photographers were also detained and taken to a nearby police station with Alyokhina, while Borisova said she managed to avoid arrest. 

The FSB building on Lubyanka Ploshchad was previously the headquarters of the Cheka, as well as the FSB’s predecessor, the KGB.

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