Finland’s Launonen Rejects Hungary Literary Prize
(MTI) – Finnish author and translator Hannu Launonen has rejected Hungary’s Janus Pannonius Prize, the Hungarian PEN Club confirmed a press report on Thursday.
Referring to a letter sent to the Hungarian PEN Club, its head Geza Szocs said that contrary to prior arrangements, the Finnish celebrity had decided not to take over the prize and an accompanying 50,000 euros at a ceremony scheduled for early October, when he learnt that the award was financed by the Hungarian government.
On the website of the Finnish PEN Club, Launonen said that the policies of the Hungarian government, in terms of human rights and the freedom of expression, are not in line with basic principles of the International PEN Club.
Szocs said that rules of awarding the Janus Pannonius Prize would change, including a requirement of the awardee’s presence at the award-giving ceremony.
This year’s Janus Pannonius Poetry Prizes have gone to Lebanese poet Ali Ahmad Said Esber (Adonis), and France’s Yves Bonnefoy.