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Most Muslims agree with Qaeda goal: poll

world Updated: Apr 24, 2007 15:20 IST
AFP
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Most Muslims want US military forces out of the Middle East and Islamic countries and many agree with Al-Qaeda's goals, if not its tactics, suggested a public opinion poll conducted in Egypt, Morocco, Pakistan and Indonesia.

"Most respondents have mixed feelings about Al-Qaeda," said a statement of the study's findings, conducted by the Washington-based non-profit group WorldPublicOpinion.Org and the University of Maryland.

"Large majorities agree with many of its goals, but believe that terrorist attacks on civilians are contrary to Islam."

An average of 74 per cent of all those polled agreed with the goal of "push(ing) the US to remove its bases and military forces from all Islamic countries," said the poll.

A full 91 per cent of Egyptians and 69 per cent of Moroccans said they approved of attacks against US soldiers in Iraq, while 61 per cent of Indonesians disapproved. Pakistanis appeared divided on the matter, with 31 per cent for such attacks and 33 per cent against.

The survey found similar responses with regard to US forces in Afghanistan and the Gulf.

At least 70 per cent or more in all countries supported the goals of "stand(ing) up to Americans and affirm(ing) the dignity of the Islamic people," and "pressur(ing) the United States not to favour Israel," it said.