Fewer Ukrainians Oppose Compromises in Talks with Russia, Survey Shows

(Bloomberg) -- Ukrainians’ opposition to concessions in talks with Russia has diminished in the last two years, though most people believe that Volodymyr Zelenskiy should remain president until the end of martial law, a new poll shows.

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A majority of Ukrainians still rules out making compromises in negotiations with Russia, but the share has decreased to 58% from 80% in May 2022, according to the survey, which was conducted May 26 to June 1 by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology. A total of 30% of respondents didn’t agree with the idea of opposing compromises, the study showed.

While Kyiv has secured billions of dollars in fresh Western aid to repel Vladimir Putin’s invasion, Kremlin forces have been battering Ukraine’s energy sector, and an effort by Zelenskiy to gain more international support at the weekend fell short of its aims. The Ukrainian leader has consistently rejected calls made by Moscow to surrender territories since the war began in February, 2022.

A total of 65% of respondents indicated that they favored a referendum on any possible terms of an accord with Russia, according to the survey, which polled 2,011 Ukrainians by phone.

Russia has sought to question the Ukrainian leader’s legitimacy since his elected term of head of state officially expired in May. Although support for Zelenskiy’s decisions dropped to 56% from 77% in September, a total of 70% said he should remain president until the end of the period of martial law, the survey showed.

A minority of 34% backed a recent law tightening the rules for conscription, according to the study.

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