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Quadriga withdraws award for Putin

The Local · 16 Jul 2011, 13:58

Published: 16 Jul 2011 13:58 GMT+02:00

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The Werkstatt Deutschland organization cited "massive criticism in the media and the political world" over its plans to give Putin the Quadriga Award that recognizes "role models for enlightenment, dedication and the public good."

The group said it "profoundly regretted the news that (former Czech president) Vaclav Havel wanted to return his prize received in 2009" in protest at Putin's nomination.

Putin was to receive the award in part because of progress he'd made in improving relations between Russia and Germany, the board had said earlier, adding that this "is one of the great achievements of Vladimir Putin."

But many German politicians have charged that his human rights record makes him an unacceptable candidate.

Cem Özdemir, the head of Germany's Green party, announced he was stepping down from the board of the non-profit Quadriga in protest at the decision.

"In my view, the Quadriga prize should go to people who have done a particular service to democracy and its promotion," he said in a statement. "I do not see Vladimir Putin among those ranks."

"During his tenure as head of state and prime minister, Putin has dismantled democracy, restricted freedom, undermined the rule of law and given Russia corruption," Human Rights Commissioner Markus Löning told Der Spiegel magazine.

Story continues below…

Erika Steinbach, a Bundestag member with the centre-right Christian Democratic Union added: "During his presidency, human rights were and are being systematically violated."

AFP/The Local/bk

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

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Your comments about this article

15:56 July 16, 2011 by harcourt
I wonder what Comrade Vladimir will think of having the prize dangled in front of him and then snatched away. As he is such a nice man I'm sure he won't harbour any grudges!!
16:13 July 16, 2011 by catjones
Werkstatt is either incompetent or cowards. The resulting value of the so-called prize has dropped to absurd.
17:18 July 16, 2011 by lunchbreak
Oh shucks, Putin so deserved it.
19:23 July 16, 2011 by Englishted
So now no gas or electric .
20:34 July 16, 2011 by bernie1927
What a bunch of cowards these politicians are. This is a slap in the face and an inexcusable insult to Mr. Putin. Incredible! Shame on Mrs. Merkel. If he had never been nominated, that would be one thing, but to withdraw the nomination??
21:15 July 16, 2011 by wxman
Alright everyone, here's today's mind tingler. Which of the previous posters is a socialist?
21:22 July 16, 2011 by wood artist
Well, I'd have to agree he didn't deserve it based upon the criteria. In fact, I posted my opinion when it was announced. This, however, is an interesting twist that I don't think I've ever seen before.

Based upon history, I don't think he's a man to take something like this public rebuke without responding. Should be interesting.

01:58 July 17, 2011 by Klaipeda
But this critical media doesn't have a problem with the war criminals Sarkozy and Obama. When these leaders start killing Arabs in yet another Arab country (Libya this time), the German media asks if Germany is isiolating itself and suggests Germany should kill Libyans too.
05:52 July 17, 2011 by harcourt
wxman #6

So anybody who is not enamoured by Putin can't be a socialist - strange logic - maybe they just don't like tyrants !!
11:22 July 17, 2011 by Englishted

Thank you for the complement .
11:55 July 17, 2011 by jg.
"..and given Russia corruption..."

Which shows how little some people know of Russia or that they prefer to forget the government of Yeltsin that they thought was such a good idea following the collapse of the Soviet Union. If there is one thing above all else that still gives Putin widespread support and popularity amongst ordinary Russians, it is that he did a lot of cleaning up after Yeltsin. Yeltsin's administration had fostered corruption and facilitated the plundering of Russia's resources and people's life savings into the pockets of a handful of oligarchs (some of whom now hide in the West with their ill gotten gains). Whilst there is still widespread corruption in Russia, it is dramatically less now than under Yeltsin.

Putin still enjoys a level of popular support in Russia that the politicians who criticise him can only dream of in their own countries.
15:29 July 17, 2011 by Kiyoshi Kawazu
I think that Vladimir Putin is a dictator.

He has no right to recieve any award for human rights.

I agrre with the committe's withdrawl.

It is a common sense of Germany.
06:08 July 18, 2011 by neunElf
Yes, jg, and Mussolini made the trains run on time.
20:16 July 18, 2011 by jg.

Mussolini was a dictator who changed electoral law to retain power. Putin has not altered any laws to stay in power, despite widespread support for him to do so just that when he was president. He stll enjoys widespread popular amongst his own electorate - if you don't believe me, try slagging off Putin to any group of Russians you happen to meet and see how they respond.
08:55 July 19, 2011 by ValP
omigod this is just so incredibly ridiculous! first they give the prize, then they withdraw it... reminds me of little kids - they do it all the time.... give a toy to a friend, then regret, change their mind and want it back....
15:47 July 19, 2011 by olegru
Quadriga (award) "Премия вручается людям или группам за стремление к инновациям, общественному благу и обновлению путём действий в сфере политики, экономики и культуры" господин Путин таким человеком не является.

"award sponsored by Netzwerk Quadriga gGmbH" а "эти " просто слабаки )))

то дадим то не дадим )))

P.S. Не все в порядке в датском королевстве " William Shakespeare"
10:21 July 22, 2011 by HistoryProffessor
This is awesome. I love it when a big time leader gets knocked on their butt. Especially, when its Putin. Who cares if its a slap in the face? He needs it! Way to go Germany for recognizing that Putin is a piece of crap and deserves 0 world wide recognition.
22:16 July 22, 2011 by Stephen Goodson
"German politicians have charged that his (Putin's) human rights record makes him an unacceptable candidate". Well, at least in Russia they do not imprison you for 12 years (without remission), if you have a different view on society and history, as is the case with Horst Mahler, who apparently has no human rights in Germany at all.
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