The findings are part of a report on “Measuring the State of Muslim-West Relations,” released Dec. 1 at Gallup’s Washington headquarters.
“We also found that this concept of respect … now includes perceptions of fairness in policies, not just culturally sensitive language,” said Dalia Mogahed, executive director of the Gallup Center for Muslim Studies.
Fifty-four percent of Muslims said being treated fairly in policies that directly affect them would be a very meaningful demonstration of respect.
Mogahed said the “policies” were not defined in the new report, but past Gallup studies have found that respondents were particularly concerned about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Nearly three-quarters of Muslims polled said increased respect for the Quran and other religious symbols would be helpful. About half want to see Muslims portrayed more accurately by Hollywood.
Researchers found people across the globe – from the United States to sub-Saharan Africa – believe the tensions between Muslim countries and the West are mostly avoidable.
“This was especially true among people who saw the conflict as political in nature,” Mogahed said, “rather than caused by religious differences.”
The findings are based on interviews with more than 100,000 in more than 55 countries between March 2008 and May 2010.