According to a public opinion poll released on Monday, in the last quarter of 2015, two thirds of the Arabs living in Judea and Samaria and in the Gaza Strip continue to demand the resignation of PA Chairman Abbas; a growing majority supports a return to an armed intifada; and a growing majority rejects the two-state solution. And while a majority supports ending the PA’s commitment to the Oslo agreement, a similar majority doubts Abbas’ seriousness about abandoning that agreement. Also, the “Oslo generation” of young Arabs between ages 18 and 22 are the biggest supporters of an armed intifada and stabbings against Israeli civilians and soldiers, and the least supportive of the two-state solution.
The poll was conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in Judea and Samaria and the Gaza Strip between December 10 and 12, 2015.
If presidential elections were held today in the Palestinian Authority, any Hamas candidate would win a clear victory against Abbas. If parliamentary elections were held today, Hamas and Fatah would receive two-thirds of the popular vote, one third each. Marwan Barghouti, still languishing in Israeli jail for his murder conviction, remains Fatah’s only hope of defeating Hamas.
In the context of the current escalation in Arab-Israeli confrontations, two thirds support stabbing attacks against Israelis even though almost three quarters express opposition to the involvement of young school girls in the stabbing. Half of the public believes that the current confrontations will escalate into an armed intifada. If so, two thirds believe that the armed intifada will serve Palestinian national interests in ways that negotiations could not.
The poll also found a growing rejection of the two-state solution. Similarly, two thirds believe that the two-state solution is no longer viable due to settlement expansion, and three quarters believe that the chances for the establishment of a Palestinian state next to the state of Israel in the next five years are slim to nonexistent.
Responding to the declaration by the Chairman Abbas that the PA would not continue to honor its Oslo commitments if Israel continues to ignore its own Oslo obligations, two thirds say they support abandoning the Oslo agreement. A similar majority however does not believe that Abbas is serious about his declared intention to abandon the Oslo Accords. Regardless of the price that Palestinians might have to pay, the public is particularly in favor of ending security coordination with Israel, and by a smaller majority also supports suspension of Palestinian-Israeli civil coordination.
The poll’s sixth and final set of questions deal with ISIS, the Paris attacks, and the waves of refugees:
An overwhelming majority of 88% believes that ISIS is a radical group that does not represent true Islam and 7% believe it does represent true Islam. 5% are not sure or do not know. In the Gaza Strip, 10% (compared with 5% in Judea and Samaria) say ISIS represents true Islam.
77% support and 20% oppose the war waged by Arab and Western countries against ISIS.
87% oppose the recent bombings in Lebanon and 8% support them; 80% oppose the November Paris attacks and 14% support them; 78% oppose the downing of the Russian plane in October and 16% support it.
42% believe that the Paris attacks will have no impact on the Palestinian cause but 41% think they will have a negative impact and 8% think they will have a positive impact.
55% say the European treatment of the current wave of refugees from countries like Syria, Libya, and Iraq is bad or mostly bad and 37% say it is good or mostly good.
For the complete poll results go to Palestinian Public Opinion Poll No. 58.