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Thursday, 22 April. 2021
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The Palestinian Initiatives for The Promotoion of Global Dialogue and Democracy

  • Majority supports ceasefire; dissatisfied with Egyptian role in reconciliation
  • In spite of preference for two-state solution, increase in support for a binational state
  • Rejection of confederation and increase in support for negotiations
  • Majority sees widespread corruption

    Majority for truce

    A public opinion poll conducted by the Jerusalem Media and Communications Centre (JMCC) in cooperation with Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) showed the majority of Palestinians polled, 67.8% supported the idea of a long-term ceasefire with Israel, while 28.7% opposed it. The majority of respondents, 61.7%, said this ceasefire would improve the overall living conditions of the Palestinians as opposed to 32.6%, who said it would not.

    Pessimism regarding reconciliation

    With regards to reconciliation between Fatah and Hamas, the poll showed no rise in the level of optimism for its achievement. 36.8% said they were less optimistic about the possibility of achieving reconciliation, 39.1% said there had been no change in the level of their optimism, while 21.3% said they had become more optimistic.

    Discrepancy regarding the Egyptian role

    The poll showed that 50.6% of those polled are dissatisfied with the Egyptian role in sponsoring reconciliation talks between Fatah and Hamas. The larger percentage of those, who claim to be dissatisfied with the role of Egypt, were in the West Bank (54.1%), with 45.3% in the Gaza Strip claiming to be dissatisfied with Egypt.

    No majority for confederation between Palestine and Jordan

    The poll also showed that the majority of respondents, 61.0%, oppose the idea of a confederation between Jordan and Palestine, while 39.0% said they support it (32.0% in the Gaza Strip and 43.8% in the West Bank). When supporters of a confederation with Jordan were asked when it should be implemented, respondents were split between 49.6% who said they supported it only after a Palestinian state was established, while 43.8% said they would support it in any event.

    Majority in favor of negotiations and opposed to armed resistance

    The poll indicated disparities in the public’s positions on what was the best strategy for achieving the goals of the Palestinian people in ending the occupation and establishing a state. The percentage of those who view peaceful negotiations as the best method rose to 46.9% in this poll from 25.2% last January (2018), while it was 37.6% in February 2017 and 33.6% in March 2015.

    In contrast, the percentage of those who support armed resistance dropped to 24.7% after it was 30.3% in February 2017 and 33.1% in March 2015. Furthermore, the percentage of those who support nonviolent popular resistance dropped to 20.3% in this poll compared to 25.4% in February 2017 and 27% in March 2015.

    In response to a question about whether locally-made rockets fired from Gaza at Israeli targets help or harm Palestinian national interests, the percentage of those who said they help dropped to 31.0% in this poll from 61.8% in October 2014 and 74% in December 2012.

    In spite of rise in support for the one-state solution, preference remains for two states

    Regarding the opinion of respondents on the best solution to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, the two-state solution continued to be the most prominent one, with 37.5% supporting it as opposed to 30.3% who preferred the one-state binational solution in Historical Palestine. Support for this formula has increased, from 18.1% in February, 2017 and 21.3% in July 2016.

    Public perception sees widespread corruption

    The majority of those polled, 81.7%, said they believed there was widespread corruption in the Palestinian Authority institutions and services in comparison to 12.9% who said that corruption was not widespread at all or was spread to a small extent. The poll specifically asked about what was perceived as the worst forms of corruption (nepotism, bribery, abuse of public funds, favoring supporters of a certain movement, or lack of transparency). 49.8% of those polled said nepotism, 13.4% said bribery, 12.7% the abuse of public funds, and 10.5% said favoring supporters of a certain movement.

    In terms of providing public services, the majority of those polled, 83.4% said nepotism was present to a great or average extent while 11.9% said it was not. The same applied to government appointments, whereby the majority, 85.4% said they felt there was nepotism in government appointments as opposed to 10.1% who said there was not. The larger percentage, 50.4%, said the government dealt with public funds transparently to a low or very low degree, while 15.9% said it handles public funds transparently to a high or very high degree.

    The poll also showed that the public is dissatisfied with social services in proportion to the taxes collected. The majority of those polled, 76.7%, said they think the level of services provided by the PA in general are not appropriate for the amount of taxes collected as opposed to 14.9%, who said the taxes were proportionate to the services.

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