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Majority of Russians hope to mend ties with Ukraine, poll reveals

Almost half of those polled said that bilateral relations between the states over the past year have remained unchanged

MOSCOW, February 20. /TASS/. Most Russians (79%) expect to restore relations with Ukraine, a poll carried out by the All-Russia Public Opinion Research Center uncovered on Tuesday.

Some 44% of the survey’s respondents said Russian-Ukrainian ties "would normalize but would never be friendly again," while another 35% said the two countries would be able to restore friendly and allied relations "sooner or later."

One in ten respondents said, "Relations will continue deteriorating as a result of Ukraine’s desire to achieve closer integration with the West."

Some 40% of Russians describe the current relations with the neighboring country as tense, most notably young people (47% among respondents at the age of 18-24). Some 22% call them hostile, while another 13% and 11% say they are frigid and neutral, respectively.

Almost half of those polled said that bilateral relations over the past year have remained unchanged, while 34% said they have been only worsening.

Most Russians (75%) said Ukraine came up short after the Maidan events, which had culminated in the February 2014 coup d’etat. Only 2% of Russians said Ukraine gained any advantage.

The nation’s leading polling agency conducted the survey on February 15-16 based on phone interviews with 2,000 respondents. The margin of error does not exceed 2.2% at the 95% confidence level.