June 25, 2024

Athens News

News in English from Greece

Are Westerners Ready for Concessions on Russia?

The attitude of the population of the leading Western countries to sanctions against Russia due to the war and readiness for concessions is demonstrated by a survey conducted in 25 states by the University of Cambridge and YouGov agency from August 24 to September 22.

As writes The Guardian, a majority of respondents from 13 Western or English-speaking countries – Germany, France, Sweden, Spain, Denmark, Italy, Greece, Hungary, Poland, USA, UK, Australia and Canada – ten (except Italy, Greece and Hungary) support maintaining sanctions against Russia . The minimum rate was 57% and 58% in France and Germany, approximately 60%, 62% and 65% were recorded in Canada, the USA and Poland, while the maximum, more than 70%, was noted in Sweden, Great Britain and Denmark.

At the same time, a significant number of respondents in these countries believe that the sanctions are “not tough enough” and should be strengthened: 62% in Poland, 57% in Sweden, 50% in the UK, 40-50% in France, Germany, Spain and the USA. Citizens of Denmark (66%) and Great Britain (63%) support sanctions even against the backdrop of an increase in their living expenses – they are ready to be patient, writes “European Truth”.

Most of the citizens of these ten countries are also in favor of non-violent measures of “hybrid war” against the Russian Federation, for example, targeting Russian media with alternative information. Direct military intervention by NATO does not enjoy significant support – from 40% in most countries to 20% in Germany).

Militarily, NATO assistance to Ukrainian forces received significant support, including the supply of weapons, intelligence and training outside the country; cyber and information warfare directed against the Russian government; and even military advisers inside Ukraine (provided that they did not participate in hostilities).

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More than half of Western respondents did not support a possible compromise with Moscow regarding the option to end the war in Ukraine. During the poll, they were asked whether they would support various concessions from the Russian Federation – the end of sanctions, Russian sovereignty over Crimea, the independence of Donetsk and Luhansk, guarantees that Ukraine will not join NATO – if Russia agrees to stop hostilities and give up everything, the majority , some or none of its Ukrainian territorial acquisitions.

Most intriguingly, the majority of Western respondents showed little willingness to compromise with the Kremlin over a possible end to the conflict, if any. Only 13% of the French supported the recognition of Russian sovereignty over Crimea if Moscow did not give up any of the recently annexed Ukrainian territories, and even if it did, support was only 17%. In Germany, the corresponding figures were 20% and 17%, in Sweden – 13% and 10%, in Spain – 18% and 16%, Poland – 12% and 11%, Great Britain – 10% and 6%, and the USA – 15% and 13%.

In the aforementioned Italy, Greece and Hungary, 22%, 23% and 31% of respondents believe that NATO is doing “too much” for Ukraine. In Greece and Hungary, only 37% and 32% support maintaining sanctions against the Russian Federation, and only a fifth of the Greeks and Hungarians polled supported the provision of heavy weapons by NATO to Ukraine.

In Greece, Hungary and Italy, citizens are more inclined to make concessions to Russia: for example, 31% of respondents in Greece, 28% in Hungary and 23% in Italy were in favor of recognizing Russian sovereignty over Crimea even if Russia does not give up one of the new Ukrainian territories.

The vast majority in the countries of the Western Alliance (up to 78% in Sweden, Denmark and the UK) blame Russia for the current war in Ukraine, and, accordingly, a very low number (4% in Poland, 6% in Spain, 7% in France) blame the West . In Greece and Hungary, however, only 37% and 35% said Russia was more to blame.

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