Survey: Support for accepting Ukrainian refugees in Estonia on the rise

Ukrainian war refugees arriving in Tallinn in March 2022.
Ukrainian war refugees arriving in Tallinn in March 2022. Source: Ken Mürk/ERR

In February and March this year, levels of support for accepting Ukrainian war refugees in Estonia fell. However, according to a poll conducted by Turu-uuringute AS and commissioned by the Estonian Government Office in May, support is on the rise once again, both among ethnic Estonians and respondents of other nationalities.

According the Turu-uuringute AS survey conducted this May, 73 percent of respondents supported the admission of Ukrainian war refugees to Estonia, choosing either the "definitely support" or "rather support" options. 67 percent chose those same options in February's survey, as did 65 percent in March. In comparison to the March survey, the number of respondents who chose "definitely support" increased from 27 percent to 35 percent.

Support for accepting war refugees from Ukraine has increased among both ethnic Estonians, from 74 percent in March to 82 percent in May, as well as for Estonian residents of other ethnicities (49 percent in March and 56 percent in May).

Overall, Estonians' attitudes toward helping Ukraine have not changed compared to February, with 80 percent supporting the provision of humanitarian aid both then and in the May survey.

67 percent support the Allies continuing to provide Ukraine with military assistance, up from 66 percent in February's poll. 67 percent are also in favor of Estonia contributing to Ukraine's post-war reconstruction, a figure which is down slightly from 69 percent in February.

64 percent support sanctions against Russia, even if that means a significant increase in energy and food prices. This is up from 61 percent in February.

At the same time, the level of support for the provision of aid to Ukraine is significantly higher among ethnic Estonian than among Estonian residents of other nationalities.

87 percent of Estonians surveyed said they were in favor of providing humanitarian aid, while this was only the case for 65 percent of those from other ethnic groups.

The survey revealed a major difference between ethnic and non-ethnic Estonians surveyed, when it comes to supporting the provision of military aid to Ukraine. 86 percent of ethnic Estonian respondents were in favor of providing military aid, compared to only 28 percent of non-ethnic Estonians respondents.

77 percent of ethnic Estonian respondents were in favor of Estonia contributing to the reconstruction of Ukraine, as were 47 percent of non-ethnic Estonians surveyed.

According to the survey, 80 percent of Estonians and 31 percent of non-ethnic Estonian respondents support sanctions against Russia.

The survey was commissioned by the Estonian Government Office and conducted by Turu-uuringute AS by telephone and online between May 18 and 22, 2023.

The survey was targeted at Estonian residents aged 15 and above. A total of 1,256 people responded.


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Editor: Michael Cole

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