Budapest, April 26 (MTI) – The Central European University (CEU) has refuted remarks that Prime Minister Viktor Orbán made at Wednesday’s European Parliament plenary session.
Orbán attended a plenary focusing on the amendment of Hungary’s higher education law, the planned amendment of the law on civil organisations, the automatic detention of asylum-seekers, media-pluralism and the independence of the judiciary.
CEU said in a statement that Orbán had claimed, referring to a letter written by CEU President-Rector Michael Ignatieff to the students and teachers, that Ignatieff is not worried that CEU, operating in Budapest, may be closed down.
“This is false. Ignatieff assured the CEU community in that letter that the university will continue operating under any circumstances. This does not mean, however, that the survival of the university in Hungary is not under threat,” the statement showed.
The CEU said it was also false that the new law abolishes privileges and loopholes and distributes rights across universities in an equal fashion.
“For weeks now, we have been asking the government to name the specific privileges possessed in the past by CEU and the rights given now to all Hungarian universities,” the statement added.
Unfortunately Orban failed to answer these questions again, the CEU said.
CEU has worked hard to gain accreditation and issuing diplomas is not a privilege, the statement showed.
“The measures claimed to benefit the Hungarian universities met with robust protest across the entire Hungarian education sector. This is because the new law and the way it was adopted shows disrespect to Hungarian higher education and to academic freedom,” the statement added.