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Poll reveals one in three Russians believe in witchcraft

October 31, 2016, 15:38 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Some 27% of those polled said they had seen manifestations of witchcraft with their own eyes

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© Alexandr Ruyimin/TASS

MOSCOW, October 31. /TASS/. One-third of Russians (36%) believe that some people are capable of casting spells or an evil eye, a poll conducted by the All Russia Public Opinion Research Center showed.

"A significant part of our fellow citizens believe in witchcraft, as 36% of those polled confessed they consider some people capable of casting spells, or evil eyes while 27% said they had seen manifestations of witchcraft with their own eyes," the Center said in a statement. That said, women (42%) and middle-aged individuals in the 45-59 year-old range are more prone to believe in witchcraft than men (29%) and youth in the 18-24 age group (24%).

Almost half of the respondents (41%) including the bulk of young people aged 18 to 24 (63%) and men (48%), are not inclined to believe in sorcery. At the same time, around one in four (24%) Russians found it difficult to answer this question.

Most respondents (71%) said they had never witnessed witchcraft themselves but the further away from big cities one goes, the fewer the skeptics about witchcraft there are. For instance, in Moscow and St. Petersburg 83% of those polled said they had never dealt with the supernatural, while in cities populated with less than 100,000 people, 69% said they had never seen anything supernatural, in rural areas the rate is 67%.

"Although a relative majority of Russians say they don’t believe in witchcraft, nevertheless many are familiar with at least stereotyped and mythological views of it," Ivan Lekontsev, an All Russia Public Opinion Research Center analyst said.

The poll was conducted on October 22-23 among 1,600 people, with a margin of error of 95% certainty, not exceeding 2.5%.

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