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(03/29/03) -

Spaniards Reject War On Iraq

(CPOD) Mar. 29, 2003 – While their president supports the invasion if Iraq, a great majority of Spaniards are against the conflict, according to a poll by Instituto Opina published in daily El Pa­s. 92.4 per cent of respondents reject the war, and 79.7 per cent disapprove of the way president José Mar­a Aznar has handled the crisis.

(CPOD) Mar. 29, 2003 – While their president supports the invasion if Iraq, a great majority of Spaniards are against the conflict, according to a poll by Instituto Opina published in daily El Pa­s. 92.4 per cent of respondents reject the war, and 79.7 per cent disapprove of the way president José Mar­a Aznar has handled the crisis.

This surge in opinion might prove costly for Aznar’s conservative Popular Party (PP) in the upcoming May 25 municipal elections. Spain must also hold a general election in 2004. Aznar will not seek a third term in office, and one of his senior cabinet members is expected to become the new leader of the PP.

Since February, demonstrations against the war have taken place in several Spanish cities. The protests have turned violent in some occasions. Around 170 people were injured during a clash between protesters and police officers in Madrid on Mar. 22. Anti-war protesters have also disrupted campaign appearances by PP candidates. 85.9 per cent of respondents say the conflict in Iraq will not solve the problem of international terrorism.

Spain has committed 900 troops and three ships to the coalition, but Aznar refers to their presence as a “humanitarian mission.” Spanish medical units and mine-clearing experts have also been deployed.

Polling Data

Do you support the military campaign in Iraq?

Yes

5.1%

No

92.4%


Do you support president José Mar­a Aznar’s stance on the war?

Yes

14.1%

No

79.7%

Will this war solve the problem of international terrorism?

Yes

12.1%

No

85.9%


Source: Instituto Opina / El Pa­s
Methodology: Telephone intervews to 1,000 Spanish adults, conducted on Mar. 26 and Mar. 27, 2003. Margin of error is 3 per cent.