18% of Russians convinced YUKOS arrests are simply pre-election popularity stunt

18% of Russians are convinced the arrest and prosecution of YUKOS top managers is simply a pre-election stunt to gain popularity among the electorate and distance Russian businessmen from the political process. This was the result of a national survey of 1600 people from 40 different regions carried out by the National Public Opinion Research Centre. Another 18% said they were sure that the arrests are just another episode in the struggle for power between different political clans.

15% of respondents said the arrests were connected with the financial machinations of the YUKOS management and had nothing to do with politics while 11% said they believe that the arrests mark the beginning of another large-scale campaign against the 'oligarchs.' Only 4% said they regarded criminal investigations into the company as an attempt to limit the influence 'of non-Russian capital on Russia.'

16% said they had not heard of the YUKOS controversy while 18% did not reply.

The survey was carried out from July 17-21 in 100 different towns and villages of the Russian regions.

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