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SYKTYVKAR, November 15 (Itar-Tass) -- The authorities in the Komi republic said leader of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDPR) Vladimir Zhirinovsky was persona non grata in interaction with them. Komi republic governor Vyacheslav Gaizer said so at a meeting with representatives of the regions' national and cultural autonomies which had suggested taking adequate measures against Zhirinovsky. The participants in the meeting with the governor said Zhirinovsky, during his appearance on Russian television on November 7, claimed that Komi's indigenous residents oppressed all other ethnic groups living in the republic. By making such a statement, the deputy speaker of the State Duma insulted people in the region, the public representatives said.
Chairman of the "Belarus" science-cultural autonomy in Komi Arkady Krupenko, in expressing the consolidated opinion of national autonomies, said the information about enmity between ethnic groups in the region was a provocation.
"Zhirinovsky's speech boiled down to the claims that Komi's indigenous people was oppressing other ethnic group. That they are dictating us their will, language and culture. This is not so. We denounce such a conduct of the LDPR leader in a public speech on Russian television," Krupenko said.
"To say a person did not act wisely is to say nothing," Gaizer said, "a federal level politician, occupying a post of State Duma deputy speaker, is talking nonsense, while being perfectly aware of what he is doing. In this sense, he insulted the whole republic in general, not only the Komi people. It is unclear, what goals he was seeking to attain. Even if we take into account the election campaign rhetoric frenzy, he set up his colleagues in the Party among whom there are ethnic Komi. How should they feel about it? I believe the reaction will be directly opposite to what he was hoping for."
"I support the Komi Voityr's reaction /a regional public movement of the Komi people - eds Itar-Tass) and the consultative council for the affairs of national-cultural autonomies," the head of the republic said.
"Mr Zhirinovsky henceforth is persona non grata for the executive authorities, for official interaction with us, until he apologizes to the republic and the people living here. Such thoughts -- not mentioning such actions which he tries to laud -- are unacceptable," the head of the republic said.