Russia's popularity sags in wake of Ukraine crisis: poll
Russia's popularity around the world is sagging, and so too is confidence in the way President Vladimir Putin handles global affairs, a 44-nation survey published Wednesday suggests.
In the wake of the Ukraine crisis, 74 percent of Europeans, 72 percent of Americans and 68 percent of Middle East respondents said they have unfavorable views of Russia, according to the Pew Research Center poll.
Negative sentiment was not as strong in Latin America, Asia and Africa -- at 45, 41 and 31 percent respectively -- but in every region, unfavorable views were up from a year ago.
On a national level, they were strongest in Poland, Germany, Italy, Spain, France, Britain and the United States where more than six in 10 respondents held a negative image of Russia.
Unsurprisingly, six in 10 people in Ukraine gave Russia low marks, with negative sentiment strongest in the western part of the crisis-stricken country, but just four percent in Russian-annexed Crimea.
Meanwhile, majorities or pluralities in 25 nations expressed a lack of confidence in Putin to do the right thing in world affairs -- with 80 percent of Americans having little or no faith in the Russian leader, up 26 percentage points from a year earlier.
"Negative ratings for Putin have also increased by double-digits over the past two years in Poland (plus 12 percentage points) and Brazil (plus 13)," said Pew, which conducted face-to-face and telephone interviews with 48,643 respondents in 44 countries, including Russia, from March 17 to June 5.
Its full report is at www.pewglobal.org.
© 2014 AFP