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April 10, 2013 10:58 am

Poll: 90.9% of Palestinians Believe Hamas and Fatah Should Reach Reconciliation Deal

avatar by Zach Pontz

Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal (L) and PA President Mahmoud Abbas. Photo: Jewish Policy Center.

A new poll released by the Jerusalem Media and Communications Center showed that the overwhelming majority of Palestinians (90.3%) believe that Hamas and Fatah should pursue national reconciliation even if this leads to the United States and Israel imposing sanctions on the Palestinian Arabs.

As for the party more responsible for the persisting division and the failure to reach reconciliation, 28.6% of respondents put the responsibility on Hamas while 19.8% put it on Fatah, while 22.3% blame both sides. A higher percentage of people in the Gaza Strip blamed Hamas for the continued division than did in the West Bank  (32.8% as opposed to 26.2% respectively) while a higher percentage of those in the West Bank blame Fatah for the continuation of the division more than Hamas (20.4% as opposed to 18.6%).

Meanwhile, a majority (59.5%) says both Fatah and Hamas are acting in their own interests instead of the national interest by not working towards achieving reconciliation.

Only about a third of Palestinians said that they were optimistic (32.9%) about reaching a peaceful settlement with Israel versus 39.4% who said they were pessimistic and 23.2% who said they were very pessimistic.

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83.8% of respondents said that they support non-violent means of resistance and 78.9% think such efforts should be intensified. More than a third of Palestinians (36.8%) believe that peaceful negotiations are the best method to achieve a Palestinian State, but a quarter (25.4%) favor using force. A clear majority of 60.2% considers terrorism to harm the Palestinian national interests.

A random sample of 1179 people over the age of 18 was interviewed face-to-face throughout the West Bank and Gaza Strip between 27th and 31st of   March 2013. 53.3% of the respondents were from the West Bank, 10.2 % from Jerusalem and 36.5 % from the Gaza Strip.

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