Russian President Vladimir Putin is the most popular politician in Belarus. Such was the finding of a nationwide survey conducted in September 2002 in Belarus by the Independent Institute for Socio-Economic and Political Research.
To the question, 'Who among contemporary politicians at the highest level do you like best and comes closest to meeting your ideal for a politician?', 58% of those polled said they liked Vladimir Putin best. The Russian leader was clearly ahead in popularity vis-а-vis Belarus President Aleksandr Lukashenko, whom 26.6% of those polled said was their idea of a leader.
Trailing them came, in this order: German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder (15.9%), French President Jacques Chirac (13.7%), Cuban leader Fidel Castro (7.9%), Polish President Aleksandr Kwasniewski (7.6%), British Prime Minister Tony Blair (7%), US President George Bush (7%) and Ukraine President Leonid Kuchma.
Next in popularity came Saddam Hussein (Iraq), Bill Clinton (US), Slobodan Milosevic (Yugoslavia) and Boris Yeltsin (Russia).
A total of 1,519 Belarussians took part in the survey.