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Poll: Young Czechs interested in politics, mistrust politicians

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Prague, Oct 14 (CTK) – Some 75 percent of young Czechs mistrust politicians, who, they believe, are doing nothing for them, but at the same time, about 80 percent of them are interested in politics and support democracy, a survey of youth groups in the Visegrad Four (V4) states showed, Sona Polak has told CTK.

Citing the results, Polak, spokeswoman for the Czech Council of Children and Youth (CRDM), an umbrella association, said almost a half of Czechs aged from 15 to 24 would like to move abroad in three years.

Prague is a part of the V4 together with Hungary, Poland and Slovakia.

Most young Czech respondents (84 percent) said Czech politics needs new faces and new leaders.

About 50 percent said all political parties seem all the same to them.

On the other hand, a number of young Czechs believe that building a civic society makes a sense. That is why they often discus politics. About a half have discussed it with their family and friends, one third at school, and about one fourth during their leisure time activities, according to the poll.

Most young people, over 50 percent, said they sought information on politics on the Internet and social networks in the past year, and the same share also gained information from television.

Seventeen percent listened to the radio to gain the information, and a similar share (18 percent) read printed newspapers and magazines, the poll showed.

One quarter of those polled said they actively visited the website of a political party or a civic group, while one fifth have joined an online community dealing with social and political issues.

Compared with their V4 peers, young Czechs tend to share political news on social networks.

About one third of them sent such pieces of news further to other recipients, compared with 15 percent in Hungary and 24 percent in Slovakia.

According to Polak, such active young people also take part in elections.

About 8 percent of the Czech respondents said they joined a demonstration in the past year.

Two thirds of young Czechs show interest in politics on their own, while 14 percent do so because of friends and 10 percent because of their family. Other motivating factors were celebrities, teachers, politicians themselves and NGOs.

Sixty-two percent of the respondents said they consider participation in general elections their duty.

Two thirds believe that election results will influence their lives, and that elections are a chance for them to promote their personal interests.

One third consider elections nothing but time wasting, the poll showed.

According to CRDM analyst Jan Husak, 12 percent of Czechs aged 20-24 refuse to take part in the general election due next weekend.

Referring to the poll, Husak said 15 percent of young Czechs believe that they will definitely be living abroad in three years, and another 32 percent said they will be living abroad more probably than in the Czech Republic.

A total of 734 Czech respondents were polled within the poll this summer.

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