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Poll: Preventing terrorism top policy goal

Feb. 20, 2013 at 12:31 PM

PRINCETON, N.J., Feb. 20 (UPI) -- Nearly nine in 10 Americans say preventing terrorism should be a top foreign policy goal for the United States, a Gallup poll released Wednesday indicated.

Respondents also give priority to preventing the spread of nuclear weapons and securing adequate energy supplies for the country, results indicated.

Those asked indicated they were less likely to list as important foreign policy goals such as the promotion of economic development in other countries and helping other countries build democracies, the Princeton, N.J., polling agency said.

Preventing future acts of international terrorism was the top-ranked issue listed by 89 percent of respondents. Eight-three percent said prevention of the spread of nuclear weapons should be a top priority, while 82 percent said securing adequate energy supplies for the United States was their top priority.

The remaining six issues Gallup included in its survey were, in order, promoting favorable trade policies, defending allies' securities, working with groups such as the United Nations to bring about world cooperation, promoting and defending human rights in other countries, promoting economic development in other countries and helping other countries build democracies.

Respondents were most likely to give greater weight to international issues with a real or potential direct effect on the United States, Gallup said. Matters involving providing assistance to other countries were ranked lower.

Results are based on nationwide phone interviews with 1,015 adults conducted Feb. 7-10. The margin of error is 4 percentage points.

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