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Most Ukrainians cautiously view security agreements as generally beneficial

05 Jul, 2024
Most Ukrainians cautiously view security agreements as generally beneficial

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65% of surveyed Ukrainians believe that the security agreements signed by Ukraine are beneficial for strengthening the country's defense capabilities. However, most hold a cautious attitude towards these agreements. These findings come from surveys conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) between May 16-22 and June 20-25.

"An overwhelming majority of Ukrainians—65%—consider the security agreements beneficial for enhancing Ukraine's defense capabilities. Notably, 18% find them very beneficial, while 47% see them as somewhat beneficial, indicating a generally cautious attitude. Meanwhile, 27% of Ukrainians believe these agreements have no impact on defense capabilities or are not beneficial at all," the press release summarizing the research, published on the official KIIS website, states.

Sociologists note that in all regions of Ukraine, a majority of the population (from 59% in the East to 68% in the West) view the security agreements as beneficial for strengthening defense. No more than a quarter of the population in any region holds a skeptical view of the agreements.

When evaluating the usefulness of the security agreements, 13% of Ukrainians believe the agreements will provide everything necessary to liberate territories and repel future Russian aggression. Another 27% think these agreements will at least help to hold the enemy at the current front line and possibly liberate certain areas. Overall, 40% believe the security agreements can at least contain the enemy. Meanwhile, 51% of Ukrainians think that Ukraine will receive insufficient support to effectively counter Russia.

KIIS Executive Director Anton Hrushetsky, commenting on the research findings, quoted Mykola Bielieskov, Chief Consultant of the Military Policy Department at the National Institute for Strategic Studies:

"Unfortunately, Ukraine is in a position where it accepts interaction formats that are acceptable to our partners... This is neither our fault nor the fault of those currently in power. International relations remain more about risk assessment and the cost of various steps, as well as maximum freedom of maneuver, rather than philanthropy, as we would like. Therefore, we must honestly admit that the agreement with the USA (and similar agreements) could turn into a more detailed version of the Budapest Memorandum or one of the tools that could change the situation for the better. It’s a matter of content."

Hrushetsky added that it is difficult to criticize Ukrainians for their caution and doubts:

"Ukrainians remember the infamous Budapest Memorandum, the untimely and insufficient assistance after the full-scale invasion, and the dependency of Ukraine's aid on the internal politics of partner countries... If Ukrainians see a steady flow of weapons in sufficient quantities, notice that aid is not subject to the whims of internal politics, and ultimately 'feel' the effects (for instance, a halt to systematic shelling of frontline areas), then they will be able to overcome their fears and concerns regarding security agreements."

Between May 16-22, 2024, and June 20-25, 2024, KIIS conducted two separate nationwide public opinion polls, "Omnibus," adding questions about Ukrainians' perception of security agreements. Using telephone interviews based on a random sample of mobile phone numbers in all regions of Ukraine (government-controlled territory), they surveyed 1,067 respondents between May 16-22 and 1,007 respondents between June 20-25. The surveys included adult (18 years and older) citizens of Ukraine living in government-controlled areas at the time of the survey.

Under normal circumstances, the statistical error of such a sample does not exceed 4.1% for indicators close to 50%, 3.5% for indicators near 25%, 2.5% for indicators around 10%, and 1.8% for indicators near 5%.

In wartime conditions, besides the mentioned formal error, there is an additional systematic deviation.

The Odessa Journal

The Odessa Journal

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