More Belarusians Want Unification with Russia

Polling Data

If a referendum on Russia-Belarus unification took place today, how would you vote?

For unification

Dec. 2008

Sept. 2007

Against unification
(Dec) 35.3%

(Sep) 47.4%

Wouldn’t vote
(Dec) 9.7%

(Sep) 11.0%

Not sure
(Dec) 8.2%

(Sep) 7.8%

Source: Independent Institute for Social, Economic and Political Studies (IISEPS)
Methodology: Face-to-face interviews with 1,522 Belarusian adults, conducted from Dec. 2 to Dec. 12, 2008. No margin of error was provided.

[quote=article]Belarus seceded from the Soviet Union in 1991. In 1994, independent candidate Aleksandr Lukashenko won the presidential election, boosted by his popularity after acting as chairman of an anti-corruption parliamentary committee. Lukashenko remains the country’s president to this day.

In March 2006, Lukashenko won the presidential election with 82.6 per cent of the vote. The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said the ballot “did not meet the required international standards for free and fair elections” and was “severely flawed due to arbitrary use of state power and restrictions to basic rights.”

Belarus is ruled by rather tyrannical government. Russia under Putin would compare favorably. Plus consider that Russia is significantly wealthier, with a per capita GDP of $14,800 vs. $10,600 per capita GDP in Belarus. A desire to reunite is perhaps understandable under those circumstances.

Definitely a move that’s influence by economic circumstances; no doubt, nationalism plays some part. Most citizens are Russian Orthodox.

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