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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 December 2007, 12:51 GMT
Russia prohibits denial of Santa
Father Frost costume on statue of Moscow's founder, Yuri Dolguruki
Russia's Father Frost is similar to Western Europe's Santa Claus
The Russian government has banned a television advertisement for denying the existence of Father Christmas.

The ad for Eto electrical stores stated Father Frost, Russia's version of Father Christmas, did not exist.

The Federal anti-Monopoly Service said the ad had broken rules for advertisers not to discredit parents and teachers.

It said that declaring that Father Frost did not exist implied that parents were not telling the truth, so undermining childrens' trust in them.

The ad "induces negative relations between children and parents", Andrei Kashevarov, the service's deputy director, told Rossiiskaya Gazeta.

The advertiser, Eto, defended its commercial, saying it was aimed at adults.

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