Russians polled on where blame for Ukraine crisis lies
Just 4% of Russians believe the recent increase in tensions with Ukraine has been caused by Moscow, with the majority blaming either the US, NATO, or Kiev, a new poll has revealed.
The survey, conducted by the Levada Center, also revealed that only 15% of Russians think a war with the country’s western neighbor is impossible.
Levada is registered by Russia’s Ministry of Justice as a foreign agent due to its receipt of Western funding.
The poll was carried out amid increased fears that Russia is building its military presence on the Ukrainian border ahead of an invasion. Multiple Western media outlets have suggested that a conflict is around the corner. The Kremlin has repeatedly knocked back such suggestions, claiming Russia’s internal troop movements should be of no concern to any other nation.
According to the Levada survey, Russians mostly blame the US and its NATO allies (50%) for initiating the current border crisis, with another 16% blaming Ukraine. Just 4% believe Moscow is the main culprit, while 3% point the finger at the authorities in the Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics, two areas in eastern Ukraine that have been the center of conflict since 2014.
However, just 3% of respondents are confident that the current tension will lead to an actual war between Ukraine and Russia, with a further 36% calling it “quite probable.” Just 15% completely ruled out the prospect.
Earlier this week, a poll published by the Russian Public Opinion Research Center revealed that 52% of Russians view the Ukrainian people as ‘brothers’, while just 11% believe Ukrainians to be hostile.