Russians dub Brezhnev best national leader in 20th century - poll

Leonid Brezhnev, the Soviet leader of 1964-1982, is the most popular in Russia, Levada Center said. It polled 1,500 respondents in 45 regions on April 19-22.

Some 56 percent of the respondents said they liked Brezhnev, and 29 percent did not.

Joseph Stalin was the first runner-up (supported by 50 percent and rejected by 38 percent). Nicholas II (48 percent for and 21 percent against) and Nikita Khrushchev (45 percent for and 35 percent against) came next.

Vladimir Lenin has the lowest popularity rating, 5 percent, and 28 percent think negatively of him.

The anti-rating was topped by Mikhail Gorbachev (disliked by 66 percent of the respondents) and Boris Yeltsin (64 percent). Their approval rating stood at 21 percent and 22 percent respectively.

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