Support The Moscow Times!

Share of Russians Predicting Better Ties With the West Hits 5-Year High – Poll

Andrei Lyubimov / Moskva News Agency

The number of Russians forecasting improved relations between their country and the West has reached a five-year high, the independent Levada Center pollster said Monday.

Public support for Russia’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine has remained in the high 80s in the Levada poll since 2014, despite it leading to economic sanctions and strained Russia-West relations. Almost two-thirds of its respondents said the annexation “caused more good” to Russia, versus nearly one-fifth who said it “caused more harm.”

A total of 54 percent of respondents told Levada that Russia’s relations with the West will return to pre-annexation levels, up from 46 percent last year. Meanwhile, 34 percent said they expect the “new Cold War” to continue.

“The peak among those who believe the conflict will be put on the back burner is a hope and not a sober estimate,” Levada director Lev Gudkov told the Vedomosti business daily.

Dmitry Badovsky, the head of the Institute of Socio-Economic and Political Research (ISEPR), observed that “the ‘Crimean Consensus’ remains intact, but the authorities no longer have a ‘Crimean Effect’ on [their] ratings.”

Since 2014, an average of 46.8 percent of respondents said they anticipated improved ties with the West, according to Levada. An average of 35 percent forecast strained relations in the same period.

Levada conducted the survey among 1,600 respondents in 50 Russian regions between March 21 and March 27.

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more