VTsIOM: Western sanctions unnoticed by over 90 percent of Russians

Most Russians are aware of sanctions imposed on their country but the sanctions seem to have gone unnoticed by an overwhelming majority, sociologists told Interfax.

Most Russians are aware of sanctions imposed on their country but the sanctions seem to have gone unnoticed by an overwhelming majority, sociologists told Interfax.

Some 92 percent of the respondents said the Western sanctions had not harmed them, 4 percent spoke about a price rise and the others mentioned the freeze of accounts, the loss of a job with a foreign company and the blocking of credit cards or failed to answer the question in a poll of 1,600 respondents held by the Russian Public Opinion Study Center (VTsIOM) in 130 populated localities in 42 regions on August 9-10.

Forty-five percent of the aware respondents could not say exactly which measures the West had taken against Russia.

The best known measures are the ban on Western travels of certain Russian citizens (19 percent), the sanctions imposed on banks (15 percent) and the ban on exports and imports of certain commodities (10 percent). The respondents were less aware of the freeze of joint business projects (3 percent) and military cooperation (3 percent), suspended operations of Dobrolet Airlines (2 percent) and other measures. Only 13 percent of the respondents have heard nothing about the sanctions.

The United States topped the list of countries, which had imposed sanctions on Russia. It was mentioned by 67 percent of the respondents. Twenty-eight percent believe all European countries are involved in the anti-Russian campaign, 23 percent mentioned Germany, 11 percent - the United Kingdom, 11 percent - Australia, 10 percent - Canada and 9 percent - France.

Thirty-two percent of the respondents said the sanctions aimed to weaken Russia and to reduce its international influence. Thirteen percent suggested that the foreign leaders might have followed the scenario of the U.S. president and 13 percent said the foreign leaders might have tried to demonstrate their influence.

Two-thirds of citizens (62 percent) who have heard about the Western sanctions said the sanctions had not impacted Russia. The opinion was mostly shared by people with primary education (71 percent), villagers (67 percent) and Liberal Democratic Party supporters (67 percent).

Other opinions differed: 15 percent supposed the situation in the country had improved after the announcement of the sanctions and another 15 percent pointed to negative changes, the sociologists said.

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