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Poll: Euro 2012 guests saw similarity of Ukrainians with Europeans

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July 26, 2012, 6:56 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

Most citizens of EU countries who visited Ukraine during Euro 2012 believe that the main obstacles to Ukraine's accession to the EU are a bad economic situation, corruption in government and the presence of political prisoners, according to a survey entitled "The First Euro Exit Poll" conducted by GfK at the request of the Institute of World Policy.
© Kostyantyn Chernichkin

Most citizens of EU countries who visited Ukraine during Euro 2012 believe that the main obstacles to Ukraine's accession to the EU are a bad economic situation, corruption in government and the presence of political prisoners, according to a survey entitled "The First Euro Exit Poll" conducted by GfK at the request of the Institute of World Policy.

The study surveyed 1,048 respondents who arrived in Ukraine from EU countries.

Some 43.34% of the surveyed EU citizens believe that the economic situation is the main obstacle to Ukraine's possible membership of the EU, 40.23% believe that it is corruption in government and 38.81% - the presence of political prisoners.

According to EU citizens, the most European-style people in Ukraine are ordinary members of the public, and the least are the country's leaders.

"Such an obstacle, according to European fans, also applies to the improvement of the image of Ukraine in Europe in general," the study said.

In particular, more than half of respondents believe that in order to improve the image of Ukraine in the EU, first and foremost, it is necessary to overcome corruption, and less than half believe that it is necessary to improve the quality of life in the country in general, while a third of respondents believe that Ukraine should release its political prisoners.

Some 32.73% of respondents said that the imprisonment of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko had not influenced their perception of Ukraine, while 23.19% said that the case of the ex-premier had worsened their attitude towards Ukraine. Moreover, almost 40% of respondents noted that they do not agree with a Ukrainian court ruling on Tymoshenko's imprisonment and consider her a political prisoner. Some 20.32% of Europeans said that they did not know enough about this case, and 9.45% asked: "Who is Yulia Tymoshenko?"

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