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U.S. Diplomats Call Embassy Security Lax, Survey Finds

Associated Press

A new survey indicates that career U.S. diplomats are dissatisfied with security at American embassies.

The sampling showed that almost 80% of the respondents believe that the bombing of the U.S. Embassy annex in a Beirut suburb last September could have been prevented with reasonable security measures.

The survey was taken by the Foreign Service Journal, a monthly magazine published by the American Foreign Service Assn., the union of career diplomats. Of the 8,000 Journal subscribers--not all of them career diplomats--182 responded to the survey in the March issue, the Journal said in an article summarizing the results.

Asked if they agreed with the statement that the government has done all it could over the past few years to safeguard Foreign Service employees against terrorists, 30% disagreed strongly, 42% disagreed generally and 16% were undecided, leaving 12% in agreement, the article said.

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According to the Journal’s figures, the State Department expects to spend almost $1.6 billion to improve security at overseas posts during the three-year period ending in October, 1987.

The principal terrorist activities directed against American diplomatic installations over the last two years include bombings at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut and its annex and the embassy in Kuwait.


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