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New Poll Shows Uncertainty Among Israelis on West Bank Annexation

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avatar by Benjamin Kerstein

A general view picture shows houses in the Israeli settlement of Maale Adumim, in the West Bank, Feb. 15, 2017. Photo: Reuters / Ammar Awad / File.

A new survey shows a sharp divide among Israelis on the issue of annexing parts of the West Bank, with proponents and opponents almost evenly divided, along with a large number of undecided.

According to the poll conducted by the Israel Democracy Institute, 25% of Israelis oppose annexation in any form, 24.5% support annexing the entirety of the West Bank and 28.5% “don’t know.”

Another 14% support annexing only the large settlement blocs and 8% support annexing just the Jordan Valley.

Views break down, of course, along partisan lines. On the left, 66% of respondents oppose annexation in any form. On the right, 43% support complete annexation. The center is ambivalent, with 25% opposing any annexation and 22% supporting annexation only of the large settlement blocs.

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Supporters of annexation were also asked whether they would still support annexation if the price of doing so was the creation of a Palestinian state. 49% said they believed annexation should proceed under such circumstances. 38% disagreed and 13% did not know.

However, 55% of Israelis stated they believed the chances that annexation would actually happen were low or very low, up from 49.5% in April.

Regarding the political status of the Palestinian residents of annexed areas, 18% of Israeli Jews said they should be given Israeli citizenship, while 36% felt they should keep the same status they had now.

Among Israeli Arabs, 43% felt the Palestinians should be given Israeli citizenship, while 38.5% answered that they did not know.

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