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Poll: Majority of Russians Say Stalin Played 'Positive Role'

  • VOA News

An elderly woman holds a calendar depicting Soviet leader Josef Stalin while watching a broadcast of Russian President Vladimir Putin's speech on Crimea in Sevastopol, Crimea, Tuesday, March 18, 2014.

An elderly woman holds a calendar depicting Soviet leader Josef Stalin while watching a broadcast of Russian President Vladimir Putin's speech on Crimea in Sevastopol, Crimea, Tuesday, March 18, 2014.

More than half the respondents to a survey published Tuesday by an independent Russian polling agency said Soviet dictator Josef Stalin played a positive role in the life of the country.

Sixteen percent of the respondents in the poll carried out by the independent Levada-Center last November 21-24, said Stalin played an "undoubtedly positive" role, while 36 percent said his role was "rather positive."

Twenty-one percent of those polled said the Soviet dictator played a "rather negative" role, while nine percent said his role was "undoubtedly negative."

Nineteen percent of the respondents said they were at a loss to answer.

A 2013 report by the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace found support for Stalin in Russia had increased since the end of the Soviet Union and a correlation between, in its words, "Stalin’s rehabilitation in Russia and the presidency of Vladimir Putin."

The percentage of respondents saying Stalin played a positive role in the country's life was the highest in a Levada-Center survey since 2006, when it began asking respondents to assess the role of Russian and Soviet leaders.

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