A new study confirmed the previously announced conclusions that the June 23-24 mutiny did not affect the ratings of the president but led to a decrease in public support for Sergei Shoigu. The attitude towards Yevgeny Prigozhin has deteriorated sharply, today only one in five respondents supports him. Sympathy for Prigozhin persists primarily among young and middle-aged men who use the Internet as the main means of information. The representatives of the older generation and viewers demonstrate the greatest condemnation. There is no clear opinion about the reasons for what happened. At the same time, slightly less than half of the respondents consider Prigozhin’s criticism of the military to be at least partially justified. In relation to PMCs “Wagner” positive assessments continue to prevail: two-thirds positively assess their participation in the Ukrainian conflict. At the same time, about a third of respondents expect that as a result of the events of 23-24 there will be consolidation around the government, the same number said about improving attitudes towards the Russian armed forces; however, about half expect that “everything will remain as before.” The telephone survey was conducted from June 28 to July 1.
The level of attention to the Ukrainian events remains at the level of the last two months. Support for the actions of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation has also remained virtually unchanged and stays at a high level. After a surge in support for the idea of continuing military operations in May, against the background of the capture of Bakhmut (Artemovsk) in June, the number of supporters of peace negotiations has significantly increased. That might have been partially caused by the concerns after the events of June 24. The overwhelming majority of respondents are concerned about both the beginning of the counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the supply of Western weapons to Ukraine. Most still hold the United States and NATO responsible for what is happening. Concern about the possibility of a direct clash between Russia and NATO has grown markedly over the year.
The survey was conducted from June 22 to 28 and in the most general terms recorded fluctuations in public opinion caused by the events of June 24. The rapidity of what happened led to the fact that changes in moods were very limited. These changes were most clearly manifested in the assessments of the direction in which the country is moving. The ratings of the president and the government, which slightly deteriorated on Saturday, returned to the previous level by the beginning of the working week. Trust in the main public and state figures has hardly changed over the past month, however, we can note a slight decrease in S. Shoigu’s trust and a significant decrease in E. Shoigu’s trust. Prigozhin. In June, the rating of United Russia in terms of those who decided on the choice of the party slightly strengthened, the support of the Communist Party and the Liberal Democratic Party equaled.
Most of the respondents are not ready to take part in politics: most often because they do not see an opportunity to influence politics, or because of a lack of interest in this area. A fifth of respondents are ready to be more actively involved in politics. Respondents most often explain their unwillingness to participate in politics by saying that “politics are not for ordinary citizens”, that they “do not understand anything about politics” and are too busy with everyday affairs.
The overwhelming majority of respondents believe that it is impossible to use nuclear weapons in the conflict with Ukraine under any circumstances – this point of view prevails in all the groups under consideration.
In relation to the USA, the EU and Ukraine, negative assessments prevail among respondents, the share of which has increased slightly in recent months. Young people still treat these countries noticeably better. At the same time, more than half of the respondents believe that Russia still needs to establish relations with Western countries. Positive assessments prevail in relation to China and Iran. Respondents consider Belarus, China and India to be close friends of Russia, which has pushed Kazakhstan and Armenia, the United States, Great Britain and Germany are the most hostile, the perception of the latter as unfriendly has increased significantly over the past year.
In May, the events related to the capture of Bakhmut (Artemovsk) and other events related to the “special operation” were the most mentioned, 32% of respondents named them in total. The importance of this topic has grown over the past month. In addition, in May, respondents talked about explosions and sabotage on Russian territory and May holidays.
The level of attention to the Ukrainian events and support for the actions of the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation have not changed much over the past month. Against the background of the capture of Bakhmut (Artemovsk) by Russian troops, the share of respondents who support the continuation of hostilities has increased – their number has slightly exceeded the number of supporters of peace negotiations for the first time since August of last year. More than half of the respondents believe that the “special operation” is progressing successfully. The prevailing opinion is that military operations will drag on for another six months or longer, and confidence in this has been steadily increasing over the past year.
In May, as in the last few months, the assessments of the activities of the main public authorities have not changed significantly, the level of approval remains high. The majority of respondents still believe that things are going in the right direction in the country. The trust of the main public and state also has not changed much, while Yevgeny Prigozhin got into the top ten for the first time.
The most mentioned events in April are those related to the “special operation” (17%), while the share of such responses continues to decline: in March 2022, 75% of respondents remembered it, in April — 63%, in May — 42%, in July — 32%, in August — 34%., in September — 35%, in October – 36%, in November – 47%, in December – 30%, in January 2023 – 31%, in February – 25%, in March – 19%. In addition, in April, respondents talked about holidays (8%), the fall of a bomb on Belgorod, various natural phenomena, and the murder of military commander Vladlen Tatarsky (3% each).