Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

'Putin's Russia Worse Than Under Stalin'

The pursuit of science in President Vladimir Putin's Russia is driven by profit alone and there was less government interference even under Stalin, Nobel Prize winner Vitaly Ginzburg said.

Ginzburg's comments to Britain's Sunday Telegraph newspaper are likely to put scientists back on a collision course with the Kremlin.

"Of course, in Stalin's times the academy was under the control of the Central Committee of the Communist Party," said Ginzburg, 90, who shared the 2003 Nobel Prize for physics with fellow Russian Alexei Abrikosov. "But in those days you could come up with an idea and create -- that's how we put the first Sputnik satellite into space. Now the government thinks science must bring only income and profit, which is absurd."

In March, the Russian Academy of Sciences spurned a state plan to establish a new supervisory council that would control the body's finances and include presidential administration officials.