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German prize axed over Putin nomination

German prize axed over Putin nomination
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A German prize set to be awarded to Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has been scrapped amid controversy over his nomination.

The annual Quadriga award is given to people who advance freedom and democratic change. Four prizes were set to be handed out this October.

The organisation’s choice of Putin sparked a media and political outcry.

Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales resigned from Quadriga’s board in protest.

Critics accuse the Russian premier of suppressing human rights during his eight years as president from 2000 to 2008.

A spokesman for the organisers said earlier this week that Putin had been chosen for his contribution to German-Russian ties.

He enjoys close relations with former Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, whom he helped secure a supervisory board position at NordStream AG, a Russian-German energy firm.