As millions of Europeans are getting ready for next week's EU elections, a majority of voters fear collapse of the political framework and war between member states, revealing growing anxiety about the future of the bloc. According to the latest European polling, more than half of people in France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Slovakia, Romania, Greece, the Czech Republic and Poland though that the EU may soon cease to exist.
The survey carried out by the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) reveals that 58 percent of people in France believe the EU is very likely or fairly likely to fall apart within 20 years. Of the 14 countries polled by YouGov, constituting more than 70 percent of the seats of the European Parliament, as many a third of voters in France and Poland and over a quarter of voters in Germany believe that war between EU member states is a "realistic possibility" in the coming decade. In five key large EU member states; France, Germany, Italy, Poland and Spain, the majorities of those planning to vote for euroskeptic parties, believe war in the EU is possible. Some 46 percent of supporters of France's far-right party, Rassemblement National and 41 percent of the supporters of the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) believe a war could be possible.
More than 400 million Europeans are eligible to vote in European Parliament elections to be held on May 23 and May 26. Elections and are expected to see parties of the center strongly tested by populist and radical forces that want to reshape the bloc.
The outcome will shape policy making and leadership of the EU assembly and other Brussels institutions for the next five years, and in many cases feed into the domestic politics of the 28 member states, which, for the time being at least, include Britain. Anti-establishment, euroskeptic parties around the bloc see this election as a potentially defining moment and hope a strong showing will bolster their efforts to slow European integration and return more power to national capitals.