Pussy Riot, a feminist punk band that regularly protests against Vladimir Putin's presidential regime in Russia, claimed the four pitch invaders during Sunday's World Cup final between France and Croatia were members of the collective.
Women from the politically-charged group have been in worldwide news for their outspoken denigrations of Putin's government in the past, with two members sent to prison for nearly two years following an outdoor performance in 2012.
This latest stunt was done as a nod to the 11th anniversary of Russian poet Dmitriy Prigov's death, according to a statement released on Pussy Riot's Twitter. The band revived Prigov's image of a "heavenly policeman," an official that looks after the best interests of freedom. By contrast, the band complained the current "earthly policeman" in Russia imprisons political activists or those who participate in rallies; punishes those who express opinion on social media and encourage political debate; and fabricates misdemeanours to keep people behind bars.
The supposed Pussy Riot representatives were dressed in what appeared to be traditional police uniforms. They were promptly hauled off by security staff when they ran onto the pitch after Danijel Subasic saved Kylian Mbappe's 52nd-minute effort. At least two trespassers made it into the centre circle, while one from the quartet shared a high-five with Mbappe. Croatia's Dejan Lovren forcibly helped guards remove one pitch invader.
The tweet in full released by Pussy Riot is below: