66pc Pakistanis opposed to drone strikes: survey

Published July 17, 2014
According to this survey, the drones, a key tool of US national security strategy, have become widely unpopular across the world.— File photo
According to this survey, the drones, a key tool of US national security strategy, have become widely unpopular across the world.— File photo

WASHINGTON: Pakistan has been the main front in the drone war, but about 66 per cent people in the country disapprove the US air strikes.

Only three pc approve the drone while the rest expressed no opinion, says the latest survey by the Washington-based Pew Research Centre.

According to this survey, the drones, a key tool of US national security strategy, have become widely unpopular across the world.

'No more drone strikes in Pakistan'

Out of the 44 countries surveyed for this study, 39 oppose US drone strikes targeting extremists. Israel, Kenya and the US are the only nations polled where at least half of the public supports them.

Drones are unpopular even in India, where majorities in recent surveys supported strong military action against the militants. But on the question of drones, those who disapprove the strikes, 36 pc, have an edge over those who approve them, 28 pc. The rest do not have an opinion.

In Bangladesh, 70 pc disapprove the strikes while 22 pc approve them.

With 92 pc disapprovals, Venezuela tops the list of the nations that oppose the strikes. Only four pc Venezuelans approve them.

Jordan, where 90 pc reject and 5 pc endorse them, is second on the list of disapprovers, followed by Greece with 89 pc disapproval and 8 pc approval.

Another Muslim nation where drones are widely unpopular is Egypt, with 87 pc disapproval and 4 percent approval.

In Palestine, 84 pc disapprove and 7pc approve the strike. In Turkey, 83 pc reject the drones while 7 pc endorse them. In Malaysia 80 pc reject them while 6pc approve them. In Tunisia, 77 pc oppose the drones and 17 endorse them.

In Israel, a vast majority, 65 pc, approves the drones while 27 pc oppose them.

It is higher than the United States, where 52 pc approve the strikes while 41 pc oppose them.

In Kenya, 53 pc approve the strikes while 38 pc reject them.

In Nigeria, which is also a victim of terrorism, a simple majority, 42 pc, approves the drones while 39 pc disapprove them.

Majorities in America’s Western allies, France Germany and Italy, also disapprove its drone policy.

Even in Britain and Spain, two major victims of terrorism, majorities disapprove the drone strikes.

Among the major powers, Russia leads the opposition to drones with 78 pc disapproval and 7 pc approval. In China, 52 pc oppose the strikes and 35 pc approve them.

Published in Dawn, July 17th , 2014

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