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Most Russians believe Syria military campaign achieved its goal — poll

February 27, 2018, 12:45 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Most Russians (84%) show interest in the situation in Syria, but just 22% regularly keep a watchful eye on the events.

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Russia's Aerospace Forces in Syria

Russia's Aerospace Forces in Syria

© Vadim Grishankin/Russian Defense Ministry's Press and Information Department/TASS

MOSCOW, February 27. /TASS/. Almost three-fourths of Russians (73%) believe that the country’s Aerospace Forces have managed to attain their objectives in Syria, a poll carried out by the All-Russia Public Opinion Research Center uncovered on Tuesday.

"The assessment of the Russian Aerospace Forces’ actions in Syria is still high - 73% of citizens say they have reached the goals," the pollster said.

Most Russians (84%) show interest in the situation in Syria, but just 22% regularly keep a watchful eye on the events.

According to the survey, more than one-third of the respondents back Moscow’s policy in Syria, while 14% call for Russia to take more active steps in the region. Nearly a quarter of Russians (24%) believe that Moscow should "slow down" and act more carefully, while another 11% of those polled say Russia should stop being a party to the struggle.

Over the past six months, Russians have started being more skeptical about a settlement to the conflict, the pollster said.

"If back in September 2017 some 58% of respondents spoke about normalizing the situation, by February 2018 that had come to 38%, while 25% see neither changes for the better nor for the worse," it said. Some 17% say tensions are escalating in Syria, an 8% increase from September 2017.

The nation’s leading polling agency conducted the survey on February 20-21 based on phone interviews with 2,000 respondents. The margin of error does not exceed 2.2% at the 95% confidence level.

On December 6, 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Islamic State (terror group, outlawed in Russia) had been totally defeated on both banks of the Euphrates in Syria and on December 11 he issued an order to withdraw Russian troops from Syria. On December 22, 2017, Russian Defense Minister Sergey Shoigu reported to the head of state that Russian troops had been withdrawn from Syria, with only three military police battalions, the Center for Reconciliation of the Warring Parties and two bases, in Hmeymim and Tartus, remaining in Syria.

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