Half believe CIA interrogation methods justified: Poll

Half believe CIA interrogation methods justified: Poll
The lobby of the CIA Headquarters building in McLean, Virginia, is shown in this file photo.

WASHINGTON - About half of Americans believe that the CIA was justified in its harsh interrogation methods of "war on terror" detainees, a poll found Monday, days after a damning US report revealed harrowing details of torture.

The US Senate report released last week said the Central Intelligence Agency's interrogation of Al-Qaeda suspects, including beatings, rectal rehydration and sleep deprivation, was far more brutal than acknowledged and did not produce useful intelligence.

The findings triggered international condemnation and calls for those involved to face justice.

But 51 per cent of people in the United States believe the CIA's methods were justified (29 per cent said not) and 56 per cent said the intelligence gathered from those methods prevented terrorist attacks, a Pew Research Center survey found.

There was more doubt, however, about the decision to release the Senate report, with 42 per cent saying it was the right move against 43 per cent who said it was not. Fifteen per cent did not know.

The national survey was conducted Thursday to Sunday among 1,001 adults.

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