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Far east firm apologises after shooting the president online

Dmitri MedvedevTaking aim at the president could see an internet provider in the firing line after an ad campaign missed the target.

Primorye region's AlyansTelekom company was forced to remove a cartoon shoot-em-up from its website amid claims that the target was none other than Dmitry Medvedev.

Alyans managers made a public apology and blamed their "mad PR-team" for the controversial cartoon after the regional interior ministry announced it was unamused.

Kremlin shoot-out

Although tame compared with the blood and gore of many online shooters, a cartoon featuring a man in a suit hiding on the Kremlin's battlements drew fire from critics.

Visitors to the site saw their cursor turn into a gun sight, and a direct hit on the presidential lookalike saw a halo appear around his head.

At that point visitors were given more information about the company's Moskovsky price plan.


The Alyans webteam, however, denied all similarities with real people and places. "A resemblance could be found only by those who looked for it," read an official statement on the corporate website.

"The images pictured in our website's flash-advertising ­ including a character that someone thought looked so similar to Dmitry Anatolyevich [Medvedev]­ are just a cartoon, fictional and incidental."

They also expressed their backing for their "favourite current president" who is an active Internet-user.

"Dmitry Anatolyevich is a famous blogger, Twitteruser and online forum reader. We totally support him!" they wrote.


But they expressed regret over the design of the virtual president and company director Andrei Patrikeyev asked for public understanding.

"You know, these people are such creative personalities, they are not of this world, as people say," read his public apology statement.

The banner remained on the website after Patrikeyev's statement was made, RIA Novosti reported, although shooting the president had become impossible.

The controversial game was completely removed from the website after the authorities issued an official warning about promoting extremism.

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