Poles with record-high anti-Russian sentiments

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As many as 80 percent of Poles have negatives views on Russia, according to a new survey by the Pew Research Center released earlier last week

By Santiago de la Presilla

Despite efforts by the Russian government to boost its image abroad via state-owned broadcasters such as RT (formerly Russia Today) and Sputnik International (formerly RIA Novosti), only a median of 30 percent out of the 40 countries surveyed hold a favorable view of the Russian Federation.

“The strongest negative sentiment is in Poland and Jordan (both 80 percent). The former is a legacy of a long history of bilateral tensions. Public opinion in Jordan may be influenced by Moscow’s current support for the regime of President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, Jordan’s neighbor and the source of hundreds of thousands of refugees in Jordan,” according to the survey.

The country that saw its peninsula annexed in March of last year and a Russian-fueled insurgency in its eastern region, Ukraine, holds a 72 percent ‘unfavorable’ view of Russia, while still maintaining to have a 21 percent positive view.

“Anti-Russian sentiment is also particularly strong in Israel (74 percent), Japan (73 percent), Germany (70 percent) and France (70 percent),” says the survey, despite nearly three quarters of Germans opposing the repeated calls for permanent NATO bases in the Baltic states and Poland.

All this comes amid new Polish president-elect,  called for a “a greater presence of NATO in this part of Europe,” during his inauguration speech.

Amongst Russia’s biggest supporters, Vietnam takes the first place with 75 percent support, “but in only two other nations at least half or more of the public have a positive view of Russia: Ghana (56 percent) and China (51 percent)” states the survey conducted among 45,435 respondents from March to May of this year.

Little trust in Putin

Even though Putin’s approval rates in Russia are higher than any Western leader could ever dream of (88 percent), “a median of 58 percent around the world hold a negative opinion about Putin. His strongest critics are in Spain (92 percent), Poland (87 percent), France (85 percent) and Ukraine (84 percent). Three-quarters or more in Western Europe and North America are also critical of Putin, as are majorities in the Middle East,” according to the second part of the study.

The views on Putin in Asia and Latin America remain mixed.
The whole survey is available here.

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