WASHINGTON, March 12 (Xinhua) -- Forty-two percent of Iraqis believe that security in Iraq has improved since the withdrawal of U.S. troops from the country a little more than one year ago, according to a Gallup poll released Tuesday.
This is compared to 19 percent who say that security in Iraq has worsened since the U.S. withdrawal, finds the poll, which was based on a survey of 1,000 Iraqi adults on Oct. 8-22, 2012. Meanwhile, 38 percent say that the security situation remains about the same as during the U.S. occupation.
On political stability, 41 percent of Iraqis say it remains about the same, compared to 37 percent who say it has worsened, and 20 percent who say it has improved, the poll shows.
At the same time, more Iraqis say the corruption of government officials and the jobs situation have worsened rather than improved after the U.S. pullout, which was completed in December 2011 to end the eight-year U.S. occupation.
Forty-six percent say corruption has worsened in Iraq since the U.S. pullout, compared to 41 percent who say it remains about the same, and only 11 percent who say it has improved. A majority, or 55 percent, of Iraqis say the jobs and unemployment situation has worsened, compared to 34 percent who say it remained about the same and only 9 percent who say it has improved.
Iraq's Sunni and Shia communities hold sharply different views of the country's trajectory, with Sunnis seeing the situation more negatively after the U.S. pullout, in a possible reflection of their frustration with the Shia-dominated government, Gallup said.
Sunnis are significantly more likely than Shias to see corruption as worsening after the U.S. pullout -- 69 percent vs. 39 percent. And, 73 percent of Sunnis say the jobs and unemployment situation has worsened since the U.S. withdrawal, compared with 60 percent of Shias.
The poll also finds that an overwhelming majority, or 87 percent, of the Kurdish population prefer regional autonomy by granting the regional government the power to override national policies.
This survey demonstrates that Iraq still faces "a long and bumpy road" to reach political and economic stability, Gallup said.