Poll finds most Czechs disagree with all foreigners having the right to seek citizenship
The openness of Czech people toward foreigners has reached an historic low. Almost three-quarters (73 %) of respondents disagree that every person living in the Czech Republic should have the right to apply for citizenship; last year only 67 % disagreed.
Those are the findings of a March poll conducted by the STEM agency. A total of 69 % of respondents reject ethnic minorities having the opportunity to live according to their own traditions, while two out of three citizens consider foreigners too big a security risk to the Czech Republic.
When asked for their opinion as to whether Czechs view foreigners without bias or prejudice, the public is divided into two fairly equal camps - 47 % of respondents said they believe Czechs are not biased about foreigners. STEM reports that the current reduced openness to foreigners is probably connected to the January terrorist attack on the editorial offices of Charlie Hebdo magazine in Paris.
The number of people seeing foreigners as a security risk has increased since March 2014 by seven percentage points, to 67 %. Only 31 % of respondents said it should be possible for all minorities to live according to their own traditions, while a year ago, 46 % said it should be possible.
Tolerance for the freedom of ethnic minorities to live according to their own customs was most drastically reduced among people aged 30 to 44 and among people with college educations. "While last year people with a college education differed from groups with other levels of education in that they were more open to foreigners, currently such people share the prevailing opinions," STEM commented.
The Agency undertook the survey between 17 and 27 March of this year. A total of 1 000 people were sampled.
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