Washington, DC – A new poll released by IRI revealed 45 percent of Iraqis favor the formation of a unity government compared to 25 percent who think the winning coalition should occupy top posts and eight percent who think the distribution of power should be reflective of the distribution of votes.

With concern growing over the present security situation, 48 percent of Iraqis believe security should be the number one priority of the new government and 80 percent believe armed militias make Iraq more dangerous and should be abolished.  As Iraq’s police and military become better trained and more professional, 87 percent prefer that their safety be ensured by a national force versus 10 percent who prefer specific militias.

An overwhelming majority of Iraqis reject the use of violence as political expression with 96 percent condemning the attack on the mosque in Samarra and 78 percent stating violence is never acceptable.

Iraqis also recognize they face many tough issues as a part of national reconciliation.  Topping the list of issues were federalism and sectarianism with 16 percent listing one or the other as their first choice – 13 percent listed sectarianism as their second choice and 11 percent listed federalism.

More than 2,800 face-to-face interviews were conducted from March 23-31, 2006.  Interviews were conducted in all of Iraq’s 18 governorates.  The margin of error is plus or minus three percent.

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