Half of Russians Favor Dima Yakovlev Law, 30% Oppose

MOSCOW, January 30 (RIA Novosti) – Fifty percent of respondents in a nationwide poll spoke in favor of the recently introduced law banning child adoptions by Americans, but 31 percent said they opposed the new legislation, the Levada Center pollster said on Wednesday.

The poll, conducted between January 18 and 21, also found that 39 percent of respondents have nothing against adoptions of Russian children by families from the United States and Europe, but the government must closely monitor and control the lives of adopted children in their new families.

Twenty-two percent of respondents said Americans and Europeans may be allowed to adopt Russian children only in extraordinary situations, such as in cases of grave illnesses.

The results of the Levada Center poll, which included some 1,600 respondents across Russia, contradict an earlier January survey by the state-run VTsIOM pollster, which also questioned some 1,600 respondents.

The VTsIOM survey said 76 percent of Russian respondents believed Americans must be barred from adopting Russian children, while 53 percent thought the ban should apply to any foreign national.

Russia’s controversial ban on US adoptions came into force on January 1 as part of a wider response to Washington’s approval of the so-called Magnitsky Act, which introduces sanctions against Russian officials suspected of human rights abuses. Russia’s parliament is now expected to discuss a blanket ban on all foreign adoptions.

But even though Russians support the Dima Yakovlev law, according to pollsters, they also favor the adoption of the Magnitsky Act by US lawmakers, one of the previous Levada Center surveys indicated.

In its December survey, the Levada Center found that 39 percent agreed with the Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act – also known as the “Magnitsky Act” – passed by the US Senate in late 2012.


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