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Putin’s rating reaches maximum in past six years

May 15, 2014, 17:07 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Russia’s ruling United Russia party’s rating has also substantially gone up in the past few months

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© ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Dzgaparidze

MOSCOW, May 15. /ITAR-TASS/. The rating of Russian President Vladimir Putin has reached its maximum in the past six years, according to the results of a survey by the state-run All-Russian Center for the Study of Public Opinion (WCIOM) published Thursday.

The survey was conducted May 10-11, 2014 among 1,600 people in 130 Russian cities, towns and villages. The statistical margin of error does not exceed 3.4%

In early May, Putin’s approval rating reached its new high - 85.9%, up 3.7% from April and up 25.3% from January’s figure of 60.6%

The figure is nearly the same as six years ago, when it reached 87.4% on April 12-13, 2008.

Sociologists link the high level of approval for the president’s work to such factors as the complicated situation in Ukraine (52% of respondents said the Ukrainian developments were the key events in the past week), as well as the celebration of Victory Day on May 9 (34%).

On Victory Day, May 9, Russia and other former Soviet republics marked the 69th anniversary of the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany in World War II.

Russia’s ruling United Russia party’s rating has also substantially gone up in the past few months to 60.4% in early May from 41.7% in January. The rating, which in the past 2.5 years has on the average totaled 46.5%, reached its six-year maximum in the beginning of this month.

The situation in Ukraine is unstable after the country saw a coup in February. New people were brought to power amid riots as President Viktor Yanukovych had to leave Ukraine citing security concerns the same month.

After the coup, the Crimean Peninsula, where most residents are Russians, refused to accept the armed seizure of power in Kiev. Crimea held a referendum on March 16 in which most of its residents decided to secede from Ukraine and reunify with Russia. A relevant deal with Moscow was signed March 18.

After Crimea’s accession to Russia, protests against the coup-imposed Ukrainian leaders in Kiev erupted in Ukraine’s Russian-speaking southeastern regions, with demonstrators seizing some government buildings and demanding federalization. Kiev has been conducting a punitive operation against pro-federalization activists.

The eastern Ukrainian Donetsk and Luhansk regions held referendums on May 11, in which most voters supported independence from Ukraine.

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