Academics object to Hungarian University's award for Putin

Several departments at Hungary's University of Debrecen are objecting to the institution's decision to honor Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The university, with roots going back to 1538, is giving Putin "honorary citizenship" because of its expected participation in the expansion of Hungary's sole nuclear power plant, which is being financed and built mostly by Russia.

The university's Department of Analysis at its Institute of Mathematics and the Department of Physical Chemistry of the Institute of Chemistry on Thursday joined the Department of Constitutional Law and philosopher Mihaly Vajda in protesting the award. The departments said that "the praise of autocrats is unacceptable to us. It is against everything we represent in our academic work."

Putin is expected to receive the award next year.