New York — A new poll conducted by global research company Ipsos for Reuters News finds that three quarters (76%) of citizens in 22 countries say the United States was justified in seeking out and killing Osama bin Laden, founder of terrorist group al-Qaida.
But the same survey of 17,119 citizens conducted one week after US forces stormed his home in Pakistan also found that just 15% think the killing will lead to less attacks by al-Qaida compared to four in ten (41%) who expect it will lead to more attacks.
In fact, only 11% of global citizens say they feel safer as a result of bin Laden’s death compared with 26% who now feel less safe than they did before.
Bin Laden’s Death by US Action ‘Justified’…
Noting that ‘Osama bin Laden took personal responsibility for the attacks of 9/11 which destroyed the World Trade Center towers in New York City, USA’, a strong majority (76%) of world citizens believe the US was ‘justified in seeking out and killing bin Laden’.
An overwhelming majority (95%) of those residing in the United States, where the al-Qaida attack on the World Trade Center in New York took place, feel this way. India, the southeast neighbour to Pakistan, where Osama bin Laden was hiding was equally strong (95%) believing the action was justified. The following are the findings from all 22 countries on whether the action taken by the US was ‘justified’:
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But Killing bin Laden Won’t Reduce al-Qaida Attacks…
Only 15% of global citizens say that as a result of bin Laden’s death there will be less attacks in the future by al-Qaida. In fact four in ten (41%) expect his death will actually lead to more attacks. Just over four in ten (44%) say here will be the same number of attacks as previously.
In the United States, just two in ten (19%) say they expect less attacks compared with 35% who say there will likely be more future attacks. Half (47%) indicate there will be the same number.
Citizens of India predict equally that there will be less (38%) and more (35%) attacks by al-Qaida due to the killing of the terrorist leader.
The following is the proportion of citizens who say there will be more attacks now, and the proportion of those who say there will be less, in rank order:
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Only One in Ten (11%) Feel Safer as a Result of bin Laden’s Killing...
Only one in ten (11%) global citizens feel more safe following bin Laden’s death compared with one quarter (26%) of citizens in 22 countries who say they personally feel less safe than they did before. Six in ten (63%) say they feel about as safe as before his killing.
Citizens from India are most likely to feel safer by a considerable margin – 41% say they personally feel more safe—well ahead of next ranked Indonesia (20%) followed by 18% in the United States and 15% in Brazil. Those least likely to say they feel safer live in France (4%), Argentina (4%), Belgium (5%) and Hungary (5%).
The following is a ranked list of each country who feel more safe, and those who feel less safe, now that bin Laden is dead:
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The survey instrument was conducted among 22 countries including Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Great Britain, Hungary, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Poland, Russia, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey and the United States of America. An international sample of 17,119 adults aged 18-64 in the US and Canada, and age 16-64 in all other countries, were interviewed between May 9th and May 20th, 2011 via the Ipsos Online Panel system. Approximately 1000+ individuals participated on a country by country basis with the exception of Argentina, Indonesia, Mexico, Poland, South Africa, South Korea, Sweden, Russia and Turkey, where each have a sample 500+. Weighting was then employed to balance demographics and ensure that the sample's composition reflected that of the adult population according to the most recent country Census data and to provide results intended to approximate the sample universe. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-3.1 percentage points for a sample of 1,000 and an estimated margin of error of +/- 4.5 percentage points for a sample of 500 19 times out of 20 per country of what the results would have been had the entire population of the specifically aged adults in that country been polled.
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