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The Russian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday criticized a speech
The Russian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday criticized a speech made by Iran's outspoken President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad at the UN World Conference Against Racism in Geneva.

The conference was boycotted by the U.S., Israel and a number of European countries, including Germany, over fears that the Iranian leader would launch a verbal attack on Israel. Ahmadinejad's subsequent speech, during which he described Israel as a "most cruel and racist regime," sparked a mass walkout by those Western diplomats who attended.

"Unfortunately, harsh and unbalanced statements were voiced on the first day of the conference, particularly in the speech of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad," the ministry said adding that such statements had nothing to do with the conference's main topic.

The Russian ministry also expressed its regret that some states had refused to take part in the conference, while others walked out midway.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon also criticized Ahmadinejad's speech on Monday, calling it an attempt "to accuse, divide and even incite."


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