Ukraine: with 4 parties set to enter Parliament, what will be the impact of TV channel closures & the trial of Medvedchuk?

UKRAINE: 4 Parties to enter Parliament; closure of TV channels to have a negative impact on the reputation of the authorities; trial of Medvedchuk is set to divert attention from real problems in the country - poll suggests.

According to the results of an All-Ukrainian Public Opinion Survey, if the parliamentary elections in Ukraine were held next Sunday, four parties would have the greatest chances of entering the next composition of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine: “Sluga Narodu” (21.5%), “Opposition Platform – Za Zhittya” (18.9%), “The European Solidarity” (17.7%) and “Batkivschyna” (10.7%) parties.

This was stated in a study held on June 25-29, 2021 by the international research center BURI (The Belgium-Ukraine Research Institute, Belgium).

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Concerning the closure of three opposition channels 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZiK, 44.5% of the respondents did not support such actions of the Ukrainian authorities. 36.2% of respondents had the opposite opinion and another 19.3% of respondents found it difficult to answer this question.

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More than half of the respondents (55.2%) are convinced that the closure of three opposition TV channels will result in worsening of the reputation of the Ukrainian authorities in the world. The opinion of Ukrainian audience on this issue coincides with international reaction – the report of the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights expressed concern that the closure of 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZiK would negatively affect the freedom of speech in Ukraine. Prior to that, according to Ukrainian media, the world media wrote about 55,000 publications on the topic of channels' closure, and the issue was also commented on by the Members of the European Parliament and specialised international organisations.

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In the block of questions about the trial in the case of Viktor Medvedchuk, the answers were as follows: 57.5% of the respondents believe that Viktor Medvedchuk is not guilty and has to be acquitted and reinstated in all the rights. 64.5% of the respondents are convinced that by serving charges and choosing the restrictive measure, the authorities are trying to divert attention of the Ukrainian audience from real problems in the country. 67.1% of the respondents are sure that the trial will lead to increase in rating of Viktor Medvedchuk and “Opposition Platform – Za Zhittya.”

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The international research center BURI (The Belgium-Ukraine Research Institute) conducted the survey in Ukraine (excluding the temporarily uncontrolled territories of Donetsk and Lugansk regions, and Crimea) on June 25-29, 2021. The survey method: computer-assisted telephone interviews on the basis of random selection of phone numbers. Total quantity of respondents equaled to 2,012 individuals (representative sample). Error margin is 2.2%.

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