Even if such steps would bring peace, Ukrainians oppose giving special status to the Russian-controlled Donbas 56.1 percent to 26.4 percent and transforming their country into a federal state as a whole 59.1 percent to 21 percent, according to a new poll conducted by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology.
The agency surveyed 2044 people in 110 population points throughout Ukraine except in Russian-occupied Crimea and the Donbas. The margin of error, the sociologists said, does not exceed 3.3 percent.
In this way, Ukrainians have rejected the steps Moscow has pushed for, the West has promoted, and their president Petro Poroshenko has been pushing through as amendments to the Ukrainian Constitution. Their opinion should be determinative except for those who believe that decisions about Ukraine should be taken without reference to Ukraine.
Ukrainians were also asked what other steps they might agree to in exchange for peace with Russia:
- Exchanging Crimea for peace: 33.3 percent agree; 50.6 percent do not.
- Handing over the Donbas to Russia for peace: 15.3 percent agree; 72.1 percent do not.
- Recognizing “the People’s Republics” for peace: 18.7 percent agree; 63.7 percent do not.
- Giving Russia all the eastern and southern parts of Ukraine along the Dnieper for peace: 5.8 percent agree; 83.7 percent do not.
- Ending the pursuit of European integration for the sake of peace: 33.9 percent agree; 48.8 percent do not.
- Entering the Russian-dominated Customs Union to end the war: 28 percent agree; 50.6 percent do not.
- Ending the pursuit of NATO membership for peace: 40.7 percent agree; 41 percent do not.
- Offering the Russian language the status of a second state language: 47.7 percent agree; 38 percent do not.