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In army & church we trust, Russians tell state pollster

In army & church we trust, Russians tell state pollster
The Christian faith and military might have been among the cornerstones of Russian national identity for centuries. And it’s still the case at the end of 2018, a fresh poll reveals.

The Russians have the most trust in the military and church among all other state and public institutions in the country, the All-Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VTSIOM) said on Thursday.

86 percent of those surveyed said that they approve and support of the actions of the Russian Armed Forces. It’s an almost 20 percent increase compared to the first such poll, conducted in December 2014.

The Russian military’s image has been reinvigorated over the last decade due to the successful anti-terrorist campaign in Syria and increased defense spending, which saw state-of-the-art hardware put into service.

The Russian Orthodox Church is currently trusted by 68.8 percent the respondents, VTSIOM said. It’s also a 4 percent increase from 2014.

The third sport in the list of the most reliable institutions went to law enforcement agencies, which are backed by 57 percent.

Meanwhile, the level of trust in the both chambers of the Russian parliament has been on decline over the last four years. Support for the State Duma and the Federal Council is now at 45.5 percent and 39.2 percent, respectively, compared to 48.5 percent and 45.6 percent in 2014.

The activities of political parties are also currently backed by only 33 percent of the population, the research showed.

“It is obvious that after the adoption of some ambiguous measures, like the pension reform [which increased retirement age by five years], it was pointless to count on the quick recovery of the level of approval of the lawmakers,” Stepan Lvov, one of VTSIOM’s top researchers, said.

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The level of support from political opposition in Russia went up by just over 1 percent since last year. But, with 31.2 percent, it remains the least trusted institution among those mentioned in the survey.

Trust in the media in Russia has also been decreasing in recent years, going down from 65 percent in 2015 to 54.4 percent, the pollster said.

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