The British public opposes further European Union (EU) expansionism, as a YouGov poll reveals today how Brits are wary of EU membership bids from Ukraine, Turkey, and Israel.
A large majority of Brits polled agree that Iceland should become a member, and a small majority support Croatia’s 2013 accession. But according to today’s poll, the EU growth should stop there, with the likes of Serbia, Albania, Morocco and Kazakhstan all being roundly rejected.
As Ukraine draws together its new power structure following the ouster of President Viktor Yanukovych, its dire financial situation is being thrust upon the European Union and the United States. An Ukraine bid for accession to the EU following the Euro-philic ‘EuroMaidan’ protests could also open Britain’s doors to another wave of mass immigration.
Forty-three percent of Brits said that Ukraine should not be allowed to join the EU, while just 25 percent thought they should be.
Turkey’s long-discussed membership was also rebuked by the British public, with 45 percent opposed to its joining, and just 25 percent in support.
But the strongest rejection was for the State of Israel, which has previously expressed interest in a closer relationship with the EU. Fifty-five percent of Brits opposed Israel’s membership of the EU, and just 16 percent felt that it was appropriate.
A 2011 opinion poll in Israel revealed that 81 percent of those polled believed that the Jewish state should consider an EU membership bid. Israel’s current Minister of Foreign Affairs Avigdor Lieberman has previously expressed support for the idea of Israel’s membership of the EU, and even of the North American Treaty Organisation (NATO).
Britain and Israel have experienced unprecedented economic and intelligence co-operation in recent years, including the founding of a new Israel-UK Tech Hub, with a record high two way trade of over £3.85 billion in 2012.
Unsurprisingly, the full results of the poll shows that Labour Party members are more likely to support EU expansionism – even for the State of Israel – whereas the most sceptical are those who consider themselves UKIP or Conservative Party supporters.