A new opinion poll has suggested that only 45 percent of young Britons support UK’s role in Ukraine, a news report has stated. The survey, which was conducted by Ipsos for The Times, found there was strong backing for the UK’s contribution overall, however, opinion was softer among the younger generation.
Of those aged 16 to 34, 45 per cent either strongly supported or tended to support Britain’s role in the war.
Gideon Skinner, head of politics research in public affairs at Ipsos, told The Times the reason for the lower levels of approval among younger people was because they gave lower priority to defence.
He said: “Support is particularly high among older people and Conservative supporters, but most Labour voters also support Britain’s current role too.
“Opposition is low among all groups, although young people are more likely to be neutral. This is not completely unusual and partly reflects the higher priority given to defence by older people.”
The poll results will come as a surprise as the UK Government has been a key supporter of Ukraine.
The UK Government has been at the forefront of supporting Ukraine since the war broke out with Russia on February 24.
The Times reported that around 15 percent were either strongly opposed or tended to oppose and the remaining 32 per cent neither opposed nor supported it.
The research found that the older the respondent was the more likely they were to be supportive, with a total of 63 per cent of 35 to 54-year-olds in support of the UK’s contribution.
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The new Prime Minister Liz Truss and Defence Secretary Ben Wallace have made clear that support will long continue.
The Times further reported that Tory voters were slightly more supportive of the UK’s role than Labour voters, with 75 per cent of those who backed the Tories in 2019 supporting the UK’s role and 62 per cent of Labour voters.
There was strong approval among voters in the poll for the UK arming Ukraine in the war, with about three in five supportive of Britain sending weapons and money to help Ukraine in its fight against Russia.
There was slightly less support for sending money than weapons with 63 percent of Brits supporting weapons, compared with 59 percent supporting sending money.
Mr Skinner added that as debate continues in Westminster about the right level of defence spending, Britons are divided over whether more really should be spent on the armed forces, with defence coming below several other public services in people’s priorities.
The poll, carried out this month, found that a third of Britons thought Government spending on defence and the armed forces should stay about the same.