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September 23rd, 2009
04:59 PM ET

Report: Iranians want diplomatic relations with US but have little trust in Obama

President Obama addresses the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday.
President Obama addresses the U.N. General Assembly on Wednesday.

World Public Opinion.org

A new WorldPublicOpinion.org poll of Iranians finds that six in 10 favor restoration of diplomatic relations between their country and the United States, a stance that is directly at odds with the position the Iranian government has held for three decades. A similar number favor direct talks.

However, Iranians do not appear to share the international infatuation with Barack Obama. Only 16 percent say that have confidence in him to do the right thing in world affairs. This is lower than any of the 20 countries polled by WPO on this question in the spring. Despite his recent speech in Cairo, where Obama stressed that he respects Islam, only a quarter of Iranians are convinced he does. And three in four (77%) continue to have an unfavorable view of the United States government.

"While the majority of Iranian people are ready to do business with Obama, they show little trust in him," says Steven Kull, director of WPO.

At the same time, there are some signs of softening. Trust in Obama is three times higher than the 6 percent of Iranians who expressed confidence in George W. Bush in a 2008 WPO poll. Unfavorable views of the United States government are down 8 points from the 85 percent unfavorable views in 2008 (WPO).

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soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Diane

    So tell me again why we care if the Iranians trust our President? Do we have poll numbers on how many Americans trust their leaders?

    September 24, 2009 at 10:50 am |
  2. Manny fm chicago

    I think its more of the news in Iran is probably filtered...so they probably know is what their leaders have allowed them to know. Similar to what was sort of happening here in the U.S. Death panels...absurd...more absurd is the amount of people who actually believed it...this is america...you think that death panels would be tolerated in this country...really....come on....absurd.

    September 24, 2009 at 4:24 am |
  3. Sam

    I'm Iranian. What the media doesn't understand is that Iranians all over the world and in Iran want freedom. We do not want Iran's current regime.

    September 24, 2009 at 1:21 am |
  4. alicenyc

    Oh really, would they have prefered BUSH! The ones they need not trrust are those religious leaders, who turn a blind eye to the hundreds killed or injured during their recent election. If they don't trust our President than they really don't want relatoions.

    September 23, 2009 at 9:00 pm |
  5. mike tn

    listenin to iran president on cnn right now and have the last few years
    he is beating the same old dead horse. is that all he knows? i believe so!

    September 23, 2009 at 7:48 pm |
  6. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    So the Iranians don't trust Obama. Maybe their not so bad after all.

    September 23, 2009 at 5:50 pm |