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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Swiss Reject Zhirinovsky Visa Request

BERNE -- Switzerland has rejected a request by Russian ultranationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky and four companions for visas to enter Switzerland and stay at a health resort, a government spokesman said Wednesday.

The spokesman, Achille Casanova, said Zhirinovsky had caused violent disturbances during several trips abroad by airing his ultranationalist views and meeting extremist groups.

Germany, France, Spain and Slovenia had refused Zhirinovsky visas in the past year, he added.

"Against this background the cabinet decided today to refuse the requested visas out of consideration for the national interest and general political considerations," Casanova told a news conference.

Zhirinovsky applied to Moscow's Swiss Embassy to visit Switzerland from Sept. 5 to 20.