Levada Centre: 45% of Russians think that Ukraine's Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions should join Russia

Almost half (45%) of Russians think that Ukraine’s Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions should become parts of Russia, according to a survey (reviewed by Novaya Gazeta. Europe) conducted by Levada Centre, a Russian independent polling organisation.

Furthermore, 21% of respondents think the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions should become independent states, 14% — that they should remain parts of Ukraine. Most people that support the regions joining Russia are over 40 years of age.

“Among the people that support Russian forces’ actions in Ukraine, just over a half think that the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions should become parts of Russia. Among the people that do not support the actions of Russia’s Armed Forces, only every fifth respondent thinks that way,” the research states.

More than a half (54%) of Russians approve the plans on conducting a referendum, while 27% are indifferent. Only 11% of respondents are against the referendum, 8% were undecided.

According to the survey, 69% of Russians would support the regions joining Russia based on referendum results: 43% — definitely, 26% — most likely. Only 20% of respondents were against the two Ukrainian regions being incorporated in the Russian Federation.

The majority (80%) came out in support of Russia continuing to provide help to the “DPR” and “LNR” in restoration of destroyed buildings and infrastructure. Only 15% of respondents are against it.

Pro-Russian “authorities” of the Zaporizhzhia region talked about the plans for the region to become part of Russia back in May. In a part of the region, a bi-currency zone was introduced, similarly to the Kherson region.

Russian outlet RBC previously wrote that the Kremlin officials were discussing the idea to simultaneously hold referendums on joining Russia in both “LPR” and “DPR”. According to RBC’s interlocutors, the fact that residents of “LDPR” will vote in favour of such a step is beyond doubt, however, the situation seems to be more ambiguous in the Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, and Kharkiv regions.

At the beginning of August, Yevhen Balytskyi, “head” of the Zaporizhzhia region appointed by the Russian government, signed a decree on holding a referendum on “reunification” of the region with the Russian Federation.

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