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Support for refugees rises, survey finds, amid Ukraine war exodus

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An Ipsos survey claimed a majority believe those escaping conflict or persecution should be able to take refuge in another country.

PHOTO: AFP

WARSAW (REUTERS) – The world has become more compassionate towards refugees, according to a survey by pollster Ipsos published on Friday (June 17), a finding it said suggested the war in Ukraine had increased public openness to people fleeing war or oppression.

Some 78 per cent of people in 28 countries believe those escaping conflict or persecution should be able to take refuge in another country, up from 70 per cent in a 2021 survey.

Fewer people also believe borders should be entirely closed to refugees, with 36 per cent agreeing in Friday’s poll, against 50 per cent a year earlier, in part reflecting decreasing concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Ipsos survey of attitudes towards refugees polled 20,505 people from 28 countries, including Australia, Argentina, China, France, Great Britain, Poland, Sweden, Turkey and the United States.

“Attitudes have become more favourable since last year in most of the countries surveyed, suggesting that the Ukraine crisis has increased public openness to refugees and reversed some of the concerns generated by the pandemic,” Ipsos said.

The Ukraine conflict has forced over 6.5 million people to flee to neighbouring countries.

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