Turks View Armenians, Greeks, Jews Negatively
ISTANBUL (Trend)—Turkish citizens maintain unfriendly attitudes toward the wider world, according to a recent survey.
The opinion poll revealed many people in Turkey have negative views of Arabs, Armenians, Jews, Greeks, Russians and Americans, but views over Europeans seem to be split, while a certain majority expressed positive views of Azerbaijanis whose native language is intelligible to Turks.
According to the research, conducted by the Political, Economic and Social Research Foundation, or SETA, some 36.6 percent of participants have a favorable view of Europeans, while 35 percent expressed unfavorable sentiments. Some 40 percent of the younger generation also expressed more favorable views regarding Europeans, whereas those who were over 61 years of age tended to have a more negative opinion. On Americans, 64.8 percent of those surveyed indicated unfavorable views, with only 13.8 percent expressing favorable views.
Some 33.2 percent of those surveyed said they had a positive attitude toward Arabs, up against some 39 percent who said they had a negative perception of them. Men also seemed to be slightly more unfavorable toward Arabs than women, with some 42 percent of males, as opposed to 36 percent of females, expressing negative sentiments regarding Arabs.
Participants in the survey said if they had to make a choice between Europeans, Americans and Arabs, they would choose Arabs. When asked whether Arabs were better than Americans and Europeans, 25.3 percent of those surveyed said they “absolutely agree”, while 19.9 percent said they “generally agree”.
The research was coordinated by Professor Talip Kucukcan and covered some 3,040 participants in 12 provinces in Turkey.
Views of Iranians were also negative, according to the survey, which found 31 percent held favorable views of Iranians as opposed to 39.5 percent who had unfavorable views. The research showed participants with higher levels of education and better jobs tended to entertain more unfavorable perceptions about Turkey’s eastern neighbors. Negative views of Iranians were also higher among women, 44 percent of whom expressed unfavorable views, in contrast to men, only 35 percent of whom were unfavorable.
The participants’ outlook on Armenians, Jews and Greeks was especially unfavorable, with some 73.9 percent saying they held negative views of Armenians, 71.5 percent saying they had negative views of Jews, and 67 percent saying they had unfavorable views of Greeks. The survey showed an unfavorable stance toward Armenians and Jews was relatively more widespread among those participants with lower levels of education and socioeconomic status. Unfavorable views of Jews were also slightly higher among younger men.
Results of the poll showed 51.7 percent of participants held unfavorable views of Russians, while 20.7 percent expressed favorable views. Positive attitudes of Russians were higher among better educated men, with only 13.2 percent of women stating positive views about Russians, up against some 28.4 percent of men who said they had a positive opinion.
Some 37 percent of those surveyed also said they had a favorable perception of the Chinese, while 30 percent expressed an unfavorable view.