The Russian MP intended to visit Riga in early March to meet with Latvian politicians and take part in the all-Latvian congress of Russian schools defenders scheduled for March 6.
State Secretary of Latvia's Foreign Affairs Ministry Maris Riekstins said in an interview with Latvian `Diena` newspaper that Rogozin's remarks "show no evidence of his desire to develop a constructive dialogue" with Latvia. He also pointed out that "Dmitry Rogozin was the first and the only politician who had been denied entry visa on such grounds".
On his part, head of the opposition "For Human Rights in United Latvia" faction in the Latvian Seim, Jakov Pliner, one of the politicians who had invited Rogozin to Riga, referred to the Foreign Affairs Ministry's decision as "shameful and cowardly".
"Latvian politicians will soon shun not only Russian politicians but their own shadow as well," the MP told journalists.
Dmitry Rogozin's aide in Latvia Alexander Kozakov told reporters that by their decision the Latvian authorities "had displayed disrespect not only for the Russian State Duma but also for the Parliamentary Assembly of the European Council (PACE)". Dmitry Rogozin is a deputy chairman of PACE Political Committee.