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Ethnic tensions decline, patriotism on rise in Russia — Kremlin administration

October 08, 2014, 18:57 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The Olympic Games in Sochi and Crimea's reunification with Russia played a tremendous role in raising patriotic moods in the country, deputy head of the Russian presidential administration says

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© ITAR-TASS/Yevgeny Kurskov

MOSCOW, October 8. /TASS/. Triumphant Sochi Olympic Games and Crimea’s reunification with Russia have given a boost to patriotic moods and lessened inter-ethnic tensions, a deputy head of the Russian presidential administration said on Wednesday.

“We are seeing this year a sizable decline in ethnic tensions,” Magomedsalam Magomedov said.

“This (Sochi and Crimea) has indeed played a tremendous role in raising patriotic moods in the country, and of course a high rating of the national leader, the president, is the main factor uniting the people,” he said.

Magomedov, who is also executive secretary of the Council for Ethnic Relations under the Russian president, expressed concern over attempts from the outside to artificially trigger ethnic conflicts.

Russians back Putin's policy on Ukraine

Nearly two thirds of Russians support President Vladimir Putin’s actions on Ukraine, an opinion poll suggests.

Sixty-three percent of respondents said his policies contributed to a peaceful settlement in the neighboring nation, state-funded opinion research cener WCIOM said on Wednesday. Forty-seven percent believed Putin’s main aim was to achieve peace in Ukraine, including in its war-torn Donbass region.

Returns canvassed from 1,600 people in 42 regions on July 27-28 showed that only nine percent of respondents thought the president’s remarks were escalating tension, while 18% said his statements had had no impact on events.

“One third, or 36%, said Putin wanted to keep NATO troops out of Ukraine while 33% believed the president’s mission was to protect the Russian-speaking population in eastern Ukraine,” WCIOM said.

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