The State Duma on Friday turned down a draft of a resolution on the 'forthcoming visit of U.S. President George W. Bush to St. Petersburg to participate in the city's 300th anniversary celebration.' According to Rosbalt, the document's author State Duma Deputy Alexey Mitrofanov of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia suggested approaching Russian President Vladimir Putin with an offer of 'refusing Bush an invitation.'
The draft states that 'Russian society would like to see among its guests for celebrating St. Petersburg's 300th anniversary government, social, and political leaders at the world level, scientists, thinkers, and cultural figures who personify the civilized and progressive part of humanity.' Mitrofanov said 'at the present time representing those politicians that are not considered in vogue with world society destroys international stability and security. The war in the Persian Gulf, begun on the initiative of the American leader, killed hundreds of peaceful residents and destroyed the infrastructure of Iraq."
The State Duma Committee for International Affairs came out against Mitrofanov's initiative. 'If you follow the logic of the resolution's author, for refusing George W. Bush an invitation, it necessarily follows that we must also refuse other leaders of countries who supported the U.S.-led operation in Iraq. In that case, conducting meetings on a higher level in St. Petersburg could come into question.'
Mitrofanov's draft resolution had the support of 138 deputies, and needed a minimum of 226 to pass.