Konstantin Poltoranin, the Federal Migration Service’s chief spokesman since 2005, said he did not understand why Europe fostered immigration from Africa and the Middle East.
Russia must be more cautious about “mixing bloods,” he said in an interview with the BBC Russian Service just hours before his sacking.
“The survival of the white race is at stake and this is very palpable in Russia,” Poltoranin said.
The head of the Federal Migration Service, Konstantin Romadanovsky, called the comments “unacceptable” and confirmed they had cost the spokesman his job, the state-run Itar-tass news agency reported.
The Kremlin added Poltoranin’s interview had raised a red flag at the presidential administration and his sacking was a “logical and necessary step,” a spokesman said.
In a subsequent interview, Poltoranin denied his comments were “racist,” but stressed Russia should give priority to migrants who “know Russia, know our faith and accept our customs and laws.”
The Russian Orthodox Church is the dominant faith, but about one-fifth of Russia’s 143 million people are Muslims.