298 passengers and crew died in Thursday's crash. Photo: Getty.
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The MH17 crash has hardened public opinion towards Russia

Last Thursday's MH17 crash has changed perceptions of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. Most voters now think the issue is a matter for the West, and support three specific policies.

The British public has hardened its attitude towards Russia in the wake of the MH17 crash.

YouGov polling conducted last weekend has shown that nearly two-thirds of voters now think the Russia-Ukrainian conflict is something that should concern Britain and the West.

When asked the question in mid-March, fewer than half thought the issue was a matter for the UK.

How should the matter concern us? Three actions now have the support of at least 50 per cent of voters.

• Imposing trade sanctions on Russia

• Freezing Russian assets in Western banks

• Expelling Russia from the G8

More voters voiced support than didn't for the first two policies in March, but a majority now do after the crash.

However the biggest change in public opinion has been for expelling Russia from the G8.

There was more opposition than support for the idea in March, but now 50 per cent support the policy, while just 20 per cent oppose it (for the number-counters, 30 per cent expressed no decisive opinion).

Harry Lambert was the editor of May2015, the New Statesman's election website.

New Statesman
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Quiz: Can you identify fake news?

The furore around "fake" news shows no sign of abating. Can you spot what's real and what's not?

Hillary Clinton has spoken out today to warn about the fake news epidemic sweeping the world. Clinton went as far as to say that "lives are at risk" from fake news, the day after Pope Francis compared reading fake news to eating poop. (Side note: with real news like that, who needs the fake stuff?)

The sweeping distrust in fake news has caused some confusion, however, as many are unsure about how to actually tell the reals and the fakes apart. Short from seeing whether the logo will scratch off and asking the man from the market where he got it from, how can you really identify fake news? Take our test to see whether you have all the answers.

 

 

In all seriousness, many claim that identifying fake news is a simple matter of checking the source and disbelieving anything "too good to be true". Unfortunately, however, fake news outlets post real stories too, and real news outlets often slip up and publish the fakes. Use fact-checking websites like Snopes to really get to the bottom of a story, and always do a quick Google before you share anything. 

Amelia Tait is a technology and digital culture writer at the New Statesman.