During the summer of 2017, Vladimir Putin was awarded the Civis Honoris Causa, the title of Honorary Citizen of the University of Debrecen.
The title of Honorary Citizen can be awarded to a national or foreign person who “has contributed to the strengthening of the reputation of the University (…) through their work, moral or financial support”.
According to eduline.hu, the Russian president “earned” the title with the Paks II project, as “the Hungarian government” and the Russian Federation intend to give a significant role to the University of Debrecen in the project.
The University of Debrecen not only participates in the training of Paks II specialists but also “carries out additional complementary activities such as the training of teachers and instructors who provide primary and secondary, and, of course, higher education for the children of Russian specialists coming to Hungary”.
Right around the time when Russia launched an attack on Ukraine, news started to circulate that several institutions in Hungary and around the world revoked the titles of Vladimir Putin and other pro-government Russians.
News started to circulate that the University of Budapest has deleted the entry about Vladimir Putin’s title on the website of the educational institution.
Now, according to Debreciner, the webpage of the university reported a few days ago that, during the Debrecen University’s Senate meeting on March 17th, the members voted to revoke decree 1/2017 (VIII.18).
However, the Senate did not mention him by name, according to several news outlets, this decree contained the awarding of Putin’s Civis Honoris Cause title.
The University does not state the reason for their decision, but a new, unanimous amendment of the rules for the procedure of awarding honours and titles by the Senate might be relevant.
According to the new amendment, “during a secret ballot, with the positive vote of three-quarters of the present members of the Senate, the honourer may revoke a title or honour from the honouree if they are deemed no longer worthy, or if the title or honour was not received within three years of awarding.”
Based on this, there are only two possible reasons: one is that since he did not receive his award, it has expired, or that the Senate of the University of Budapest thinks that, in view of his recent decisions, Vladimir Putin is unfit for the title.
Source: Debreciner.hu, Hvg.hu, 24.hu