IS THE PEACE IN CHECHNYA POSSIBLE: OPINION OF RUSSIANS

IS THE PEACE IN CHECHNYA POSSIBLE: OPINION OF RUSSIANS

The analysis of the data of the public-opinion poll carried out on July 16-19, 2004 by the Analytical Center of Yury Levada (Levada-Center) on the basis of the representative selection of adult population of Russia, 1 600 people in the age over 18 years in 128 settlements of 46 regions of the country. Concerning today's situation in Chechnya, only 24 % of the respondents believe that the life there is beginning to return to normal, and 65 % are sure that the war proceeds there.

In June, immediately after the intrusion of insurgents into Ingushetia, this ratio was 21/70. In May it was 31/61, in April - 35/52.

This indicates that the impression produced by the Ingush "episode" is weakening, but hasn't been erased yet.

It is also obvious enough that the murder of Akhmad Kadyrov in May and the events in Ingushetia strengthened public mood in favor of negotiations.

Question: "Do you think that it is necessary to continue the fighting operations in Chechnya - or to begin peace negotiations?"

April May June July
To continue fighting operations 26 25 25 24
To begin negotiations 57 60 62 63


Estimating the situation of five years ago (in August it is the fifth anniversary of the intrusion of insurgents into Dagestan which created the occasion for unleashment of the "second Chechen war"), only 26 % of the respondents believe that in 1999 it was necessary to introduce troops into Chechnya, and 51 % answer that it would be enough to close the border with Chechnya. 48 % would positively react if the people who introduced the troops into Chechnya in 1999 were prosecuted.

Even greater number of people (63 %) would welcome prosecution of those who unleashed the war in Chechnya in 1994 (19 % are against the trial in this case).

Answering the question why it became possible the unobstructed intrusion of insurgents into Dagestan in August of 1999, the respondents more often point out economic interests "of those who would like "to profit" from this war" (42 %), incompetence of the Russian special services (22 %), conniving policies in respect of the Chechen separatism (22 %), corruption among Russian military (15 %), and the interest of the Russian special services in the unleashment of the war (11 %).

Source: Levada-Center
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Aude MERLIN
Tél : (33) (0) 6 70 939 830
aude.merlin@wanadoo.fr

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