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Russian performance artist says he's received French asylum

Associated Press logo Associated Press 4/05/2017
FILE- In this Wednesday, June 8, 2016 file photo, Russian performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky speaks to the media as he leaves a court room in Moscow, Russia. Pavlensky, noted for macabre, politically charged actions, has told the Interfax news agency on Thursday, May 4, 2017, that he has received political asylum in France. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, File) © The Associated Press FILE- In this Wednesday, June 8, 2016 file photo, Russian performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky speaks to the media as he leaves a court room in Moscow, Russia. Pavlensky, noted for macabre, politically charged actions, has told the Interfax news agency on Thursday, May 4, 2017, that he has received political asylum in France. (AP Photo/Pavel Golovkin, File)

MOSCOW — A Russian performance artist noted for macabre, politically charged actions has told the Interfax news agency that he has received political asylum in France.

Pyotr Pavlensky sought asylum in January after being informed of rape accusations against him. He was jailed for six months in 2015-16 after setting fire to the doors of the headquarters of the Russian federal security agency in Moscow.

His most vivid and shocking action was in 2013, when he nailed his scrotum to the cobblestones of Red Square in what he said was a metaphor for Russian political apathy.

"Yes, it's true; I got political asylum," he was quoted as telling Interfax on Thursday.

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