AMERICAN COMMAND KNEW ABOUT TORTURES IN IRAQ, MOST RUSSIANS SAY

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MOSCOW, May 28 (RIA Novosti's Nikolai Zherebtsov) - The independent Public Opinion fund has many times polled Russians' approach to the American-Iraqi conflict and studied their view on the developments in Iraq. Most respondents gave a negative assessment of the actions of the United States and its role in general in the conflict. The media reports on tortures of imprisoned Iraqis by the American military have been the pretext for taking up the subject one more time.

Most of the polled knew about the tortures from the media: half of them (48 percent) said they "knew about them", a third (33 percent) "heard something" and 17 percent said they learnt about the tortures for the first time.

Half of the polled (52 percent) said facts of tortures of Iraqi prisoners were not a surprise, while 32 percent said it came as a surprise for them. A third of the respondents (34 percent) believe tortures were en-masse, another third (30 percent) said they were episodic.

Meanwhile, the majority of the polled - two thirds (66 percent) - are sure that the American command knew about tortures in prisons and only a tenth (10 percent) tend to think it was not in the know.

Of course, the respondents for whom it was unexpected are more than others sure that tortures of Iraqi prisoners was a regular practice, instead of just episodes. Interestingly, a quarter of the polled to whom it came as a surprise tend to be of the same opinion.

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