Russian politician Pyotr Ammosov is drawing severe flak after he confessed to staring at a female colleague’s chest during her speech at a parliamentary session. A communist leader, Ammosov apparently told 34-year-old Irina Vysokikh during the session that as a “healthy man,” his eyes were fixed at her “beautiful” chest. The 54-year-old further said it prevented him from paying attention to what she was saying. When Vysokikh resisted, she was reportedly told off by another minister on the panel for “talking back” to a superior. The incident has sparked off a row around sexism in Russian politics.
As reported by Daily Mail, Vysokikh, who is the entrepreneurship minister, was making a speech on low-alcohol drinks during an online parliamentary session. She was dressed formally in a coat to suit the occasion. Nevertheless, her outfit invited a comment from Ammosov, who told her as a “healthy man,” he had his eyes fixed on “a bare part of your body.” He continued, “It’s not good, of course. Yes, as a man I admit it’s beautiful, but still…”
Vysokikh countered Ammosov’s offensive remarks saying, “I will most certainly not discuss my looks with you.”
Irina Vysokikh Reprimanded For Protesting Sexism
Another minister on the panel, however, admonished Vysokikh for attempting to speak back with Ammosov. Comments she received reportedly ranged from “Stick to your report and do not comment” and “This will be reported to your superiors.” According to Daily Mail’s report, Vysokikh’s microphone also appeared to be muted when she protested Ammosov’s remarks.
Meanwhile, some other MPs stood in Vysokikh’s support, assuring her that there was nothing wrong with what she was wearing. Calling it a case of “sexism,” minister Viktor Fyodorov said her “appearance fits the dress code required from state officials.”
Russian Sexist Of The Day
Local media apparently branded Ammosov the ‘Sexist of the Day’ when after the incident, he reportedly refused to take back his comments. He justified himself by saying, “People apologise only when they are wrong. There was no conflict, I have simply voiced my opinion.”
Social media users too have been critical of Ammosov’s comments, calling them regressive.