Vast majority of Poles say Russia is unfriendly towards Poland: research

Poles believe that Germans are closer to them than Russians in terms of culture and 79 percent of those polled say that Russia is a country unfriendly or even hostile to Poland, research for The Centre for Polish-Russian Dialogue and Understanding (CPRDiP) showed.

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“Polish-Russian political relations have stabilised at a fairly low level. A strategic dispute over the vision and future of the region determines relations between the two countries. Several years of aggressive ‘history propaganda’ by Russian authorities, mainly aimed at discrediting Poland as well as numerous unfriendly gestures and decisions are not conducive to positive changes,” the introduction to the report reads.

The research showed that among seven neighbouring nations, Russians are the most distant people for Poles. The closest are citizens of the Czech Republic and Slovakia, but Poles also feel closer to Germans than to Russians. However, the report observes that Poles believe that there is a difference between the attitude of Russians and Russia’s authorities.

“In the opinion of Poles, ordinary Russians are much more positive about Poland and Poles than the Kremlin, which policy is often considered not just unfriendly, but hostile,” the authors wrote.

The report also presents Poles’ feelings toward Russian authorities, including President Vladimir Putin.”Surveyed Poles are very critical about Vladimir Putin’s reign. Only 9 percent of them rate him positively, while 60 percent assess him negatively. Of those surveyed 20 percent are neutral and 11 percent do not have an opinion,” the report reads.

On the other hand, many Poles consider Russia a desirable tourist destination. “For 71 percent of those polled, Russia is a country worth visiting, 17 percent have a contrary opinion,” the report shows.

The whole report (in English) can be found at this address.

The research is based on a poll conducted on a sample of 1,000 Polish adults by ARC Rynek I Opinia pollster in June.