Russian priest suspended for violently baptising baby blames mother for not being religious enough

A Russian Orthodox priest accused of injuring a baby he was baptising has blamed the infant's family for the commotion, saying they are not religious enough.

Horrifying footage shows priest Fotiy Necheporenko forcibly ramming the one-year-old boy into the font.

The child can be heard screaming as the priest wrestles him into the water, at one point covering his mouth and nose to stifle the baby's screams.

His terrified mother rushes to take her baby, but Necheporenko can be seen pulling the child away from the mother and ignoring her cries.

The priest has justified his actions, saying the mother and her family were not sufficiently religious.

"It was all about the mother's high emotions," he told Russian news organisation Channel Five.

"She is a person without church experience. She was not ready for the christening."

He says nothing happened, and it was not his fault at all.

But the child's mother tells a different story.

"He did everything to hurt the child," said Anastasia Aleexeva.

"He saw that he was big, that it was not possible to dive him into such a small font," the 24-year-old told Channel Five.

She says her son is now anxious and traumatised. Channel Five reports the baby suffered scratches on his shoulders and neck.

The Russian Orthodox Church deemed the baptism "violent" and has suspended Necheporenko for a year.

Aleexeva has reported the priest to the police who are investigating the incident.