1/3 of Russians support joining EU, nearly the same want equal relations

On the eve of a session of the Russia-EU Permanent Cooperation Council on Tuesday in Luxembourg, which will be devoted to the enlargement of the European Union, the Russian Center for Public Opinion Studies conducted poll on Russians' attitude toward the EU.

The sharp discussion about EU enlargement and its consequences has influenced Russians in the following way: the number of the Russians who believe that Russia should enter the EU as a full-fledged member has decreased from 35% to 32% in the past six months.

However, the number of respondents, who believe that equal partnership without entering the EU is the optimal situation, has increased from 30% to 34%.

The number of individuals, who oppose joining the EU and answered "Russia should not attempt to enter the EU," was between 20% and 14% in the past six months, i.e., a decreasing trend.

The level of education of the respondents influenced their views: among the individuals with secondary education 24% support Russia's entry into the EU, and 40% of respondents with a higher education supported it.

The supporters of Russia's joining the European Union were prevalent in the electorate of the Union of Right Forces (39%) and United Russia (38%). However, while the number of individuals, who held such views and supported the Communists in the State Duma elections last year, was very small.

This public opinion poll was conducted on April 17-18 in 100 villages and towns in 39 regions, territories and republics in Russia and polled 1,601 people. The margin of error was 3.4%.

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