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Ukrainian trust in government and media plummets – poll

Faith in President Vladimir Zelensky has also greatly deteriorated among the country’s residents, according to a new survey

Ukrainians are losing trust in the country’s public institutions, a new poll conducted by the Kiev International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) suggests. At the same time, the country’s populace seems to remain overwhelmingly supportive of its military.

The surprising findings were unveiled by the KIIS on Monday, based on a series of computer-assisted telephone interviews conducted between November 29 and December 9. Some 1031 adult Ukrainians throughout the country were polled, the KIIS said in a press release.

The survey has indicated a dramatic drop in trust towards the Ukrainian media, with only 29% of respondents stating they believe in it and 40% saying they do not, representing a nearly twofold decrease compared to the previous year, when some 57% of the respondents expressed their confidence in the institution.

The new figure is lower than in December 2021, shortly before the conflict between Moscow and Kiev broke out, when some 32% professed their trust in the media. Ukrainian outlets have become increasingly censored throughout the conflict, with multiple publications banned and channels taken off the air.

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The survey also indicated a sharp drop in the popularity of the country’s government, with only 62% stating they trusted President Vladimir Zelensky, compared to 84% last year. The government’s approval ratings have plummeted even harder, with 26% trusting it now compared to 52% in 2022. The country’s parliament appears to be even less popular, with only 15% of Ukrainians trusting it compared to 35% last year.

Only 12% of those polled believe in judiciary courts and 9% in prosecutors, compared to 25% and 21% last year, respectively. Just 41% expressed confidence in the country’s law enforcement, compared to 58% in 2022.

However, the country’s domestic security service, the SBU, which has apparently become the main tool for authorities to quell dissent and target allegedly pro-Russian figures and institutions, continues to enjoy a high level of confidence. This year, 58% of respondents said they trusted the SBU, as opposed to 63% stating so last year. Before the conflict, only 29% said they trusted the agency.

The country’s military remains the most-trusted Ukrainian institution, with the poll showing an overwhelming 96% level of support towards it, the same as last year. Some 88% of respondents said they still had faith in the country’s top general, Valery Zaluzhny, with the question posed for the first time ever.

December 19, 2023 at 12:01AM

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