A senior Chechen government official called for polygamy to be legalised in Russia, after a married 47-year-old police chief wed a 17-year-old schoolgirl.
Magomed Daudov, head of the presidential administration of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, was pictured at the ceremony on Sunday helping the teenager, Kheda Goylabiyeva, who is alleged to have been forced into the wedding, sign the marriage register.
In an interview with Russia's gazeta.ru, Daudov called for the law to be changed to formally recognise a man's right to multiple spouses.
"If a man is able to support another woman, then why not [legalise polygamy]?" Daudov said. "This [polygamy] is common, so it would be nice to have it regulated."
The wedding has caused outrage in Russia, and was described by the country's human rights commissioner Ella Pamfilova as "medieval".
Chechen leader Kadyrov declared his support for the wedding and reportedly attended the celebrations.
Though taking a second wife is traditional in parts of Chechnya, the marriages are not recognised under Russian law, which also prohibits marriage for those aged under 18.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that laws prohibiting polygamy would not be reviewed.
"I can only acknowledge that polygamy is not allowed in our country," he told state news agency Interfax adding "We are not taking part in this discussion."
Though polygamy was permitted in the Muslim provinces in Tsarist Russia, it was made illegal in the Soviet Union.