The head of a Russian Jewish association accused one of Russia's top Muslim clerics of making offensive statements about Russia's "native population."

"The negative statements by mufti [Ravil] Gainutdin about the native population of Russia, which is forever drinking, and 'hard-working migrants' are, of course, unfair. We resolutely reject this. All nations have different kinds of people in them but one must by no means make any generalizations," rabbi Zinovy Kogan, chairman of the Congress of Jewish Religious Organizations and Communities in Russia, told reporters.

"Today secular and religious leaders must be extremely careful in their formulations if they may damage ethnic peace in light of the latest events on Manezhnaya Square," Kogan said in reference to a violent riot on the square, which lies next to the Kremlin, on December 11.

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