Latvians happier to see own troops sent abroad

Public support has grown for National Armed Forces (NBS) troops and medics taking part in international operations, say the latest survey results released by leading opinion polling agency SKDS, reported military news portal Sargs.lv.

Of respondents surveyed, 29% were in favor of Latvian citizens serving in international peacekeeping operations, regardless whether in Europe or elsewhere in the world, up a significant jump from just 22% last year.

35% of respondents were in favor of Latvian citizens serving in peacekeeping operations within the bounds of Europe only, down from 37% in 2013.

This year the percentage of respondents who think Latvians should not be taking part in any international peacekeeping operations fell to 22% opposed, whereas in 2013 32% were against any foreign military involvement of Latvians. 14% were unsure of their position on the issue, up from 8% the previous year.

Survey questions about Latvia’s participation in international military operations have been part of SKDS polls since 2004, reaching approximately 850 respondents annually.

The NBS recently released a half-hour video reportage on its soldiers on patrol in the Central African Republic's capital of Bangui, where UN forces with EU participation are trying to prevent further breakdowns in social order stemming from ethnic and religious strife.

However, Latvia recently announced it would be withdrawing its 40-man force from the EU's joint forces in Bangui, pulling them out to be home shortly after Independence Day celebrations on November 18.

 

 

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