Muslim leaders in Russia have called for believers to boycott Saint Valentine's Day, saying it "preaches universal permissiveness, amorality and nihilism."

A council of Muslim leaders in Russia's Nizhny Novgorod region released a statement Wednesday calling for a "ban" on celebrating Valentine's Day, which is growing in popularity in Russia although it is not an official holiday.

"We call on all believers and sensible people to say no to celebrating this day, since it contradicts not only the norms of Islam, but also recognised human morality," the statement said.

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