The CRRC have published the results of their “2009 Caucasus Barometer” survey, which polled respondents in all three Caucasus countries about whether they approve of friendship with various other nationalities.
“Of the three countries, Georgians are the most accepting of friendship with other ethnicities of the three countries, with an overwhelming majority of respondents approving of friendship with every nationality, Italians and Greeks scoring the highest at 83%, followed closely by Americans, at 82%,” the CRRC blog writes.
“The majority of Armenians approve of friendship with other nationalities, with the exception of Turks and Azerbaijanis. Disapproval rate for friendship with those two nationalities is 66% and 70% respectively. Notably, the highest level of approval of friendship with another ethnic group is 93% for Russians, followed by Americans, at 79%.”
“Azerbaijan is by far the most disapproving of friendship with other ethnicities. Most Azerbaijanis disapprove of interethnic friendship with the exception of 82% approving of friendship with Turks, and 52% favoring friendship with Russians. While unsurprising within the context of protracted strife between Armenia and Azerbaijan, a staggering 97% of Azerbaijanis disapprove of friendship with Armenians.”
The figures the survey showed for Armenia and Azerbaijan weren’t surprising at all, given the conflict those two nations have with each other. What struck me as surprising was Georgia with its 78% of approval rate for friendship with Russians. It is amazing, because of the August 2008 Georgia – Russian war over South Ossetia and yet, only 1 year from that, no hatred. Surely, Armenians and Azerbaijanis have important lessons to learn from our common northern neighbor.
PS: My headline is slightly misleading, but forgive me for that, please. Also, I was initially thinking about writing ‘eveyone likes Germans’, ‘everyone likes Italians”, etc, because it kind of sounded funny, don’t know why :)