Some 10% of Eastern Europeans don’t want Jews as citizens, study finds

(JTA) – More than 10 per cent of Central and Eastern Europeans do not accept Jews as citizens of their countries, according to a new study.

The study, released Wednesday by the Pew Research Center, surveyed the residents of 18 countries and found that 80 per cent of respondents would accept Jews as fellow citizens. The remainder was not sure or declined to answer.

Many fewer respondents would accept Jews as family and neighbors. Less than half would accept Jews as family and fewer than three-quarters wanted them as neighbors.

The study interviewed 1,500 to 2,500 residents in each of the countries from June 2015 to July 2016.

Jews, however, were more accepted across the region than Muslims and Roma. Only 57 percent of respondents would accept Roma as citizens, while only 19 percent would accept them as family. Roughly two-thirds of the region would accept Muslims as citizens, while only 27 per cent would accept them as family.

In some countries, the number of respondents who do not accept Jews as citizens was far higher than the median, notably Armenia, where a third of respondents said Jews should not be citizens.

Several countries with large Jewish populations before the Holocaust also topped the average: Lithuania, at 23 per cent; Romania, 22 per cent; the Czech Republic, 19 per cent, and Poland, 18 per cent.

Respondents with more education were more likely to accept Jews as family, neighbors and citizens, the study found.

The margin of error was 3.3 to 4.5 per cent, depending on the country.


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