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article imageMost Americans appear to support torture against terror suspects

By Adrian Peel     Mar 31, 2016 in Politics
According to a recent poll, nearly two-thirds of Americans believe torture is an acceptable way of extracting information from suspected terrorists -- a level of support similar to that of Nigeria, where attacks are more common.
An online survey carried out between March 22 and 28 by Reuters/Ipsos suggests that most Americans would approve the use of torture in the case of suspected terrorists. This comes in the wake of last year's mass shooting in San Bernardino and the devastating attacks in Paris and Brussels.
Respondents were asked if torture can ever be justified "against suspected terrorists to obtain information about terrorism." Around 25 percent believed it is "often" justified, while 38 percent felt it is "sometimes" justified. Just 15 percent said torture should never be used.
It seems Republicans are more in favour of the measure than the opposing party, with 82 percent of Republicans believing that torture is "often" or "sometimes" justified, compared to 53 percent of Democrats. Around two-thirds of those questioned also said they thought a terrorist attack would occur on U.S. soil within the next six months.
Presidential hopeful Donald Trump has brought up the issue in his campaign, saying he would seek to repeal President Obama's ban on waterboarding, a form of torture that simulates drowning that some human rights groups insist is illegal under the Geneva Conventions.
The poll findings indicate that many Americans agree with Mr. Trump, though the questionaire did not ask respondents to define what they consider to be acts of torture.
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