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Global Opinion of President Obama, US Mixed

  • VOA News

President Barack Obama talks with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai in the Oval Office. (White House Photo/ Pete Souza)

President Barack Obama talks with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai in the Oval Office. (White House Photo/ Pete Souza)

A new international opinion poll indicates that U.S. President Barack Obama and his policies are more favorably regarded in Europe than in the Muslim world.

The U.S.-based Pew Research Center conducted a survey of people living in 21 nations and found that attitudes towards the U.S. are generally more positive now than in 2008, when Obama was elected. The center said the biggest improvements in America's image have occurred among Europeans, but that in a number of "strategically important" Muslim nations America's image has not improved.

The survey found a sizable majority of Europeans remain largely confident in Obama and approve of his policies, and that has translated into sizable support for the president's re-election bid this year. The survey also discovered wide support for Obama and his re-election in Japan and Brazil.

But less than 30 percent of those surveyed in Egypt, Tunisia, Turkey and Jordan express confidence in Obama, and there is little enthusiasm in the Middle East for a second term for the president, with majorities in Egypt, Jordan and Lebanon opposed to his re-election.


However, Obama receives higher approval ratings than his predecessor, George W. Bush, both in Europe and in many predominantly Muslim nations.

The Pew survey also found worldwide opposition to President Obama's increasing use of unmanned aircraft, known as drones, to kill suspected terrorists. In 17 of 20 nations, more than half of those responding disapprove of drone attacks in nations like Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia.

But the drone attacks are approved by 62 percent of Americans.

In another finding, a majority of respondents, especially in Europe, believe China has overtaken the United States as the world's top economic power.

The Pew Research Center says more than 26,000 people took part in the survey, which was conducted from March 17 to April 20.


Some information for this report was provided by AP and AFP.

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