New Poll Finds Most Europeans Want Muslim Immigration Bans

Chatham House in London conducted the survey and saw that an average of 55 percent of those surveyed agreed that immigration from Muslim-majority countries should be stopped immediately. " Contradicting with official stances and speeches, this data delivered by a think tank with flawless reputation reflects the general divorce between European citizens and their political leaders".

However, despite the question going well above and beyond what Trump enacted, and specifically targeting Muslims, an average of 55 percent of participants agreed with an indefinite halt.

A statement from Chatham House said: 'Our results are striking and sobering.

The researchers - Matthew Goodwin and Thomas Raines, who are analysts at Chatham House, and David Cutts, a political scientist at the University of Birmingham - say the poll shows that there is "an underlying reservoir of public support" for Europe's anti-immigrant alt-right parties.

By contrast, 44 per cent of 18 to 29 year olds favoured a curb on immigration from Muslim countries, and less than half of degree holders would support the measure.

Education also played a part.

Majorities in eight of the 10 countries supported the ban, with Poland leading the pack at 71 percent.

The survey was carried out in Belgium, Germany, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Austria, Great Britain, Hungary and Poland. "They suggest that public opposition to any further migration from predominantly Muslim states is by no means confined to Trump's electorate in the USA but is fairly widespread", experts at the think tank concluded. France has been hit by a number of Islamist terror attacks in recent years, and National Front presidential candidate Marine Le Pen, running on an anti-immigration, anti-Islamist platform, has surged to the front of the polls ahead of the country's presidential election in May. Of those with secondary level qualifications, 59% opposed further Muslim immigration. Of those living in rural, less populated areas, 58% are opposed to further Muslim immigration.

These results chime with other surveys exploring attitudes to Islam in Europe. The most pro-Muslim immigrant country was Spain, where 41 percent of the population opposed the survey statement.

The fear of terrorism may lead to the fact that many Europeans overestimate the percentage of Muslims in their countries. An IpsosMORI poll in autumn 2016 found that public estimates of Muslim populations were more than four times the actual level in France, and three times higher than the actual figure in the UK.

The survey found the French public perceived there to be more than four times the actual number while, in the United Kingdom, respondents guessed the number of Muslims in Britain to be three times greater than the actual figure.

  • Salvatore Jensen