A new survey, released in its entirety Sunday, is painting a rarely-seen picture of Iranian public opinion.
The Institute for Policy and Strategy (IPS) at IDC Herzliya conducted an academic survey in Iran by phone throughout May and June.
Among the key findings:
No less than 45% of the respondents are willing to give up Iran's ability to produce nuclear weapons in the future, for the full removal of sanctions. 54.3% of those polled are willing to give up a part or their entire nuclear program for the full lifting of sanctions.
81% of those polled say the lifting of sanctions will make their lives easier.
70% of Iranians strongly support, or support to some extent the current talks with the West on the nuclear program. Only 11 percent oppose them.
Almost 40% of the Iranian public agree that their country should recognize Israel, if Israel signs a peace treaty with the Palestinian and withdraws from Palestinian areas. This finding is "sensational and counter intuitive, given the Iranian leadership’s position on Israel during the Ahmadinejad regime," notes the IPS.
74.2% believe there should be diplomatic and trade relations with the United States.
Curiously, despite the latter figure the United States also topped the list of Iran’s greatest enemy with 39.4 percent, with Israel second-place at 31.5 percent.
Unsurprisingly, the country viewed as Iran's closest ally is Syria (35.4), whose President Bashar al-Assad is currently relying on Iranian aid to fend-off a three-year rebellion. Lebanon comes in as a distant second (13.3).
The random phone poll included eight questions on different topics with 529 respondents and a response rate of 27 percent.
Professor Alex Mintz, who wrote and oversaw the poll, said “We initiated the survey to better understand what the Iranian people think about the sanctions and the country’s nuclear program. We were definitely surprised by some of the results.”