Kyiv International Institute of Sociology (KIIS) has published shocking data on the rating of President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy. The level of his support is almost half what it was when compared to the triumphal results of the presidential election in 2019. Only 42.6% of potential voters are ready to support Zelenskyy now [according to the poll conducted at the end of April 2020], while he managed to win with a record 73.22% result a year ago.
It is easy to notice that Russian law and law enforcement practice in the matter of punishing quarantine violators is much more humane than in Europe. There, measures to combat violators can truly be called draconian. However, in most Western countries nobody opposes such authoritarian measures. Human rights activists are silent, no demonstrations are being held, and many citizens are happy to call the police, reporting violations of the “regime of clamping rights and freedoms” by neighbours.
This claim is consistent with the pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign around the coronavirus, implying that the COVID-19 pandemic represents the end of democracy and open societies and will lead to an authoritarian takeover.
On the contrary, Russia has its strict measures against quarantine violators as well. At the end of March 2020, the Russian parliament has approved an “anti-virus” package of laws including up to seven years in prison for serious violations of quarantine rules.
At the same time, there are a lot of concerns and warnings from human rights organisations against some restrictions in different countries. For example, Human Rights Watch said that in a number of countries, governments have failed to uphold the right to freedom of expression, taking actions against journalists and healthcare workers.