About Half Latvia's Population Support Joining European Union

Less than half (45.9%) Latvia's population support the country's joining the European Union (EU). This follows from the just published results of the poll conducted in November by The Latvijas Fakti company. The poll was commissioned by Latvia's State Chancellery. Of all respondents, 35.9% definitely oppose joining the EU, while 18.1% have no opinion. The new affiliation is supported by 25% of all respondents, as compared with 34% in October.

Speaking at a press conference, Edward Kushners, Director of the Bureau of European Integration, said that the decrease of the number of the supporters of joining the union 'was unexpected and difficult to explain'. He thinks this is due to the fact that the non-citizen residents of Latvia have become more skeptical of the country's membership in the EU and that the popularization of European integration is necessary. Mr. Kushners expressed his hope that a larger number on non-citizens would become naturalized and, consequently, more open to the idea by the time a referendum concerning the matter is held.

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