Less than half of Britons, French, Germans support EU’s involvement in Ukraine – poll
Less than a half – 46 percent – of respondents from the three member states support EU involvement in the ongoing crisis in Ukraine, said the ICM poll commissioned by Russia’s Rossiya Segodnya, the state news agency reported Thursday. Altogether, 44 percent of respondents said they support non-involvement.
A majority of Germans – 58 percent – are against EU participation in the crisis, while 35 percent of French citizens are against it. In the United Kingdom, 40 percent are against the idea.
A majority of the British respondents – 54 percent – backed their government’s participation, while 48 percent of French citizens and 36 percent of Germans supporting involvement.
The poll suggests that it is mainly young people between the ages of 18 and 34 that support their government’s participation in the Ukrainian conflict. In Britain, the idea appeals to 62 percent of young respondents, while in France and Germany to 55 percent.
Seniors are most aware of the tragic events and hostilities that took place in Ukraine, the poll shows. In the UK, almost all respondents over 65 are keeping up with events in Ukraine, while 85 percent of young people from 25-34 who participated in the poll were unaware of developments there. In France, the figures for the same age groups are 93 percent and 67 percent, respectively.
The poll also revealed that a larger number of men from all three countries support direct involvement, while women are in the minority.
Most of the respondents said that the “EU should play its role in the regulation of the situation in Ukraine” mainly by “supplying humanitarian aid and a peacekeeping mission,” Rossiya Segodnya reported. Seventy-six percent of those questioned in France, Germany and UK are in favor of the aid, while 51 percent support the peacekeeping mission.
A few respondents backed the idea of financial aid in the form of loans to the Kiev authorities, while only 13 percent back the idea of sending military supplies to Ukraine, with Britain the most enthusiastic.
The EU should be involved in conducting investigations into war crimes during the Ukrainian conflict, most of those polled said. Seventy-six percent of Britons, 68 percent of the France and 54 percent of Germans backed the EU getting involved.
Those who supported the idea said that their governments should primarily look into crimes against humanity, with the UK almost unanimous on the issue.
People were sensitive on the issue of the abduction and murder of journalists, which was rated the second most outrageous crime in the conflict. A total of 79 percent of respondents said that the Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash should be investigated.
The Ukrainian crisis began last year with the so-called Maidan protests in central Kiev, which was followed by a coup in February and a bloody war in eastern Ukraine from April onward. Since the military conflict began, more than 3,500 people have been killed and almost 8,200 injured, according to UN figures.