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Poll: Most in U.S. would back Iran strike

WASHINGTON, Oct. 6 (UPI) -- A strong majority of U.S. residents say it is important to keep Iran from developing nuclear weapons, even if it means taking military action, a poll indicates.

The survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, released Tuesday, indicates that 61 percent of respondents agreed with the assertion, including 71 percent of Republicans, 66 percent of independents and 51 percent of Democrats. Only 24 percent of the respondents said is more important to avoid a war with Iran -- including 31 percent of Democrats who said so.

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The Pew pollsters also found that while there is substantial public support for non-military strategies aimed at persuading Iran from going ahead with its nuclear program, there is also considerable skepticism that efforts such as tougher international sanctions and direct talks would succeed in getting Iran to drop its nuclear ambitions.

The survey indicated that 63 percent of respondents approve of the United States negotiating directly with Iran over the issue of its nuclear program, yet 64 percent said such talks will not work.

Pollsters said the survey was conducted Sept. 30-Oct. 4 among 1,500 adults reached on cell phones and landlines. The margin of error was 3 percentage points.

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