(81.9 %) of the Palestinians miss the departed Palestinian President Yassir Arafat. (60.7 %) believe that the economic situation in the West Bank has improved under the government of Salam Fayyad. (43.7 %) demand an amendment to Oslo Accord. (62.5 %) support the presidential decree calling on holding presidentialand parliamentary elections on January 25th, 2010. (49.9 %) support the Egyptian Reconciliation Paper. (59.7 %) are in favor of deploying Arab military forces in Gaza Strip. (60.5 %) support at different extents the document of the Palestinian Prime Minister, Mr. Salam Fayyad. (59.1 %) believe that Fateh has a better chance to win in the coming
Beit Sahour – The Public Relations Bureau.
In the most recent poll prepared by Dr. Nabil Kukali, being conducted during the period October 24 – 31, 2009 and published by thePalestinian Center for Public Opinion, a random sample of (1050) Palestinian adults (over 18 years old) representing the various demographic specimens in the Palestinian society in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip, were face-to-face interviewed.
The most important finding of this poll is that the overwhelming majority of the Palestinians, namely (81.9 %), feel that they are missing the Late President Yassir Arafat five years after his departure, which is an evidence of how much respect and esteem the Palestinian people still feel towards him.
Dr. Nabil Kukali, Director-General of the Palestinian Center for Public Opinion, said that the support for the meeting held between the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and the Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu scored the considerable rate of (53.6 %), a finding that may indicate the feelings of the Palestinians that this meeting could boost the Palestinian-American relations and keep them strong, particularly after the election of President Obama. This is backed by another finding, namely (37.2 %) of the Palestinian public are of the opinion that there is a positive change in the American policy since he, Obama, is in office compared with that of his predecessor, President George Bosh. Such a meeting, Dr. Kukali commented, might convince the US administration of the significance of its role in sponsoring the peace process, especially because its ally, Israel, is the one party that impedes the negotiations and blocks the achievement of the comprehensive and just peace.
Dr. Kukali added in his comments that the majority of the Palestinian people support the presidential decree calling on holding presidential and parliamentary elections on the 25th of January, 2010. This clear majority represents (62.5 %) of the Palestinians, comprising of (66.9 %) in the West Bank and (54.7 %) in Gaza Strip. Dr. Kukali, in this context, further said that (52.1 %) of the Palestinians would vote for Mr. Mahmoud Abbas if he would run the elections as candidate for a second term of presidency. This said score comprises of (33.1 %) of the Palestinians in Gaza Strip and (62.6 %) in the West Bank, whilst his rival, Mr. Ismael Haniyyah from Hamas, would score only (14.5 %) of the Palestinian votes, being the resultant rate of (24.6 %) in Gaza Strip and a meager rate of (8.8 %) in the West Bank. In addition, Dr. Kukali indicated that almost two thirds of the Palestinian people, specifically (60.5 %), consisting of (51.2 %) in Gaza Strip and (66.1 %) in the West Bank, support the document of the Palestinian PM, Mr. Salam Fayyad. This outcome might show the conviction of the Palestinian people that this scheme is capable of developing political, economic and social programs as well as creating a democratic society and achieving the aspirations of the Palestinian people and fulfilling their hopes of establishing an independent, viable state of their own in the West Bank and in Gaza Strip. All this might have given this scheme a considerable, popular support in this poll.
At the conclusion of his comments, Dr. Nabil Kukali pointed out that the majority of the Palestinian public demand an amendment to Oslo Accord due to their conviction that this agreement did not meet what they are aspiring after, namely establishing a sovereign Palestinian state, promoting the economy, creating job opportunities, improving the living conditions, defining the borders, allocating border-crossings and boosting the freedom of movement and transportation.
Departure of the leader Yassir Arafat:
Regarding the question:” Five years after the departure of the leader Yassir Arafat, do you feel that you miss him or not ?”, (56.4 %) said “I strongly miss him”, (25.5 %) “I somewhat miss him”, (6.4 %) “I somehow don’t miss him”, (6.1 %) “I don’t miss him at all”, and (5.5 %) were reluctant to answer this question.
The Egyptian Paper
Responding to the question: ” Al-QUDS newspaper published on Sept. 10, 2009 the items of the Egyptian Reconciliation Paper. This paper suggests the holding of new Palestinian elections during the first half of the next year (2010) and the formation of a higher security committee by a presidential decree from President Mahmoud Abbas. Professional officers under this committee will be subject to Egyptian and Arab supervision. As soon as an agreement about these officers is reached, lists of detainees of the two parties will be worked out and these detainees will be released.
In addition, the paper included a proposal of forming a joint committee as to monitor the winding up of the governmental issues in the West Bank and Gaza Strip so as to avoid the perpetuity of the schism. Do you support this Egyptian paper or not ?”
(25.3 %) of the respondents said:” Yes, I strongly support it”, (24.6 %) said “Yes, I somewhat support it”, (18.7 %) “I somewhat oppose it”, (22.6 %) “strongly oppose it” and (8.8 %) answered: “I don’t know”.
(22.3 %) of the Palestinian public blame Hamas for failing to sign the Egyptian Paper, (16.0 %) blame Fatah, (43.8 %) blame equally the two parties, (7.9 %) blame the rest of the Palestinian factions, (5.7 %) blame the Egyptian government and (4.3 %) declined to respond to this question.
(66.3 %) of the Palestinian people appraised in a positive way the Egyptian role in the Palestinian reconciliation attempt, whilst (30.8 %) evaluated it negatively and (2.9 %) were undecided.
The Presidential Decree:
Regarding the question: “President Mahmoud Abbas issued a presidential decree calling on to prepare for the holding of presidential and parliamentary elections on the 25th of January of the next year (2010). Do you support this decree or not”, (23.9 %) of the respondents said:” I strongly support that”, (38.6 %) “somewhat support that”, (23.3 %) “somewhat oppose that”, (12.2 %) “strongly oppose that” and (2.0 %) said “I don’t know”.
The Presidential Elections:
(52.1 %) of the Palestinian people said they would vote for Mr. Mahmoud Abbas if he would candidate for Fateh for a second term as president of the Palestinian Authority, whilst only (14.5 %) said they would vote for Mr. Ismael Haniyyeh as Hamas candidate, but still a considerable rate of (29.2 %) said they wouldn’t participate in the elections and (4.3 %) refused to answer.
(39.5 %) of the respondents said they would vote for Mr. Mahmoud Abbas as candidate for the PA presidency, (21.5 %) would vote for Mr. Salam Fayyad and almost one third, specifically (32.3 %), said they won’t participate in the elections. (6.8 %) of the respondents refused to answer.
Document of the Palestinian Prime Minister:
Responding to the question: “Do you support the document of the Palestinian Prime Minister, Mr. Salam Fayyad, or not?” (10.8 %) said: “I strongly support it”, (49.7 %) “I somewhat support it”, (17.7 %) “I somewhat oppose it”, (7.0 %) “I strongly oppose it” and (15.2 %) said “I don’t know”.
Being asked:” Are you in favor, or not, of the meeting recently held at one of New York’s hotels between the Palestinian president, Mr. Mahmoud Abbas, and the Israeli Prime Minister, Mr. Benjamin Netanyahu, in the presence of the US-President, Mr. Barack Obama ?”, (17.1 %) said “I strongly favor that”, (36.5 %) “I somewhat favor that”, (13.7 %) “I somewhat oppose that”, (15.4 %) “I strongly oppose that” and (17.3 %) said “I don’t know”.
With respect to the question:” 16 years after signing the Oslo Accord, do you think it has effected the progress of the peace process, or not?” (8.4 %) of the Palestinians said “it has strongly effected the peace process”, (32.3 %) said “it has somewhat effected the peace process”, (30.4 %) “it had somewhat no effect on the peace process”, (26.3 %) “it had no any effect on the peace process” and (2.6 %) replied: “I don’t know”.
In this context, three of four respondents, specifically (73.5 %), said that the Oslo Agreement did not meet the aspirations of the Palestinians to be granted the possibility of establishing the Palestinian State, whilst only one of eight respondents, namely (12.6 %), is of the opposite opinion. (13.9 %) were reserved to give their opinion.
As to the extent of Oslo Accord contribution to the achievement of the economic prosperity for the Palestinians, (55.1 %) of the Palestinians are of the opinion that Oslo contribution is of low degree, (28.2 %) said that it’s middle and (8.3 %) said it’s of a great degree. (8.4 %) of the respondents refused to comment. Furthermore, (43.7 %) of the Palestinian public demand an amendment to the Oslo Accord, (39.5 %) demand its freeze and only one of ten Palestinians, specifically (9.9 %), are for its continuation. (7.0 %) of the respondents could not define their position.
The American Efforts:
Responding to the question:” The US-President Obama has shown a great personal interest to find a settlement to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Do you see a positive change in the US-American policy at present compared with that of Bosh era ?, (5.4 %) said “certainly, yes”, (31.8 %) “yes”, (28.3 %) “certainly. no”, (31.2 %) said “no” and (3.3 %) answered “I don’t know”.
In addition, (51.8 %) of the Palestinian public are of the opinion that the efforts of the US envoy, Mr. George Mitchel, will not contribute to the settlement freeze in the Palestinian territories, whilst (36.7 %) said they somewhat contribute and only (11.5 %) said such efforts contribute to the settlement freeze.
Situation of Fateh:
Regarding the question:” Do you think, or not, that Fateh now is more present than in the past ?”, (55.7 %) said “yes”, (41.0 %) said “no” and (3.3 %) answered “I don’t know”.
(59.1 %) of the respondents believe that Fateh has a better chance to win the next elections if these are held in January 2010, whilst (32.8 %) believe the opposite and (8.1 %) refused to respond to this question.
Visit of a Fateh Delegation to Gaza:
Regarding the question:” If a Fateh delegation would decide to visit Gaza, do you think that Hamas should give them the permission to do so, or not ?”,
(43.6 %) affirmed that, (32.2 %) answered “no” and (24.2 %) declined to answer this question.
The Economic Performance of Fayyad and Haniyyah:
(60.7 %) of the respondents are of the opinion that the economic situation in the West Bank under Salam Fayyad’s government has improved, whilst only (17.4 %) said it has deteriorated and almost the same rate, (17.1 %), said it remained unchanged. (4.8 %) were declined to respond. On the other hand, (61.9 %) of the respondents said that the economic situation in Gaza Strip under the government of Ismael Haniyyah has deteriorated, whilst only (15.2 %) said it has improved and (19.2 %) said it remained unchanged. (3.6 %) didn’t respond.
Administration of the Palestinian Authority:
Responding to the question: “Are you satisfied or dissatisfied with the way President Mahmoud Abbas is handling his job as President of the Palestinian Authority?” (42.4 %) said that they are dissatisfied, (45.2 %) said they are satisfied and (12.4 %) answered:” I don’t know”.
The Israeli – Palestinian Truce:
Half of the Palestinians, namely (50 %), are of the opinion that the truce between Israel and Hamas at present is serving the interest of Israel more than that of the Palestinians, whilst (43.8 %) think that it serves the interest of the Palestinian people more than that of the Israelis. (6.2 %) of the respondents didn’t unveil their attitude.
The Peace Negotiations:
With respect to the question: ” Do you strongly support, somewhat support, somewhat oppose or strongly oppose the peace negotiations between Palestinians and Israelis ?”, (17.0 %) said: ” I strongly support”, (44.5 %) “I somewhat support”, (22.7 %) “I somewhat oppose”, (11.1 %) “I strongly oppose” and (4.7 %) said “I don’t know”.
Peace between Palestinians and Israelis:
Regarding the question: “Now think of the future, and particularly when your children become in your age. Do you think there would be peace between Israelis and the Palestinians?” (2.8 %) said:” Yes, definitely”, (20.4 %) said: “Yes, likely”, (32.4 %) said:” Peace is possible”, (25.3 %) said: “Unlikely”, (17.1 %):” Definitely, no” and (2.0 %) said: ” I don’t know”.
Deploying Arab Forces in Gaza Strip:
Responding to the question: “Are you in favor of deploying Arab Forces in Gaza Strip, or not?” (21.6 %) said: ” I strongly oppose”, (12.8 %):” I somewhat oppose”, (33.0 %): ” I somewhat favor”, (26.7 %): “I strongly favor” and (5.8 %) said: ” I don’t know”.
Worry about the own Subsistence:
In reply to the question: “Up to which extent are you worried now about the subsistence of your family?” (44.0 %) said: ” I’m worried”, (23.1 %) “Too much worried”, (27.3 %) “Not so much worried”, (4.3 %): “Not worried at all” and (1.3 %) said: “I don’t know”.
The Economic Situation:
(41.0 %) of the Palestinian public rated the general economic situation in the Palestinian Territories as “bad”, (43.6 %) as “mediocre”, (14.2 %) as “good” and (1.2 %) refused to respond.
The Future Perspective:
(45.5 %) of the respondents said that they are optimistic despite of the political and economic situations prevailing nowadays in the Palestinian Territories, whilst (40.7 %) expressed their pessimism and (13.8 %) declined to respond.
The Citizen’s Main Concern at Present:
Replying to the question: “What is your main concern at present?”
(25.4 %) said:” the job / money”, (25.9 %): “the security”, (22.6 %):” the health”, and (26.2 %): “the future”.
Satisfied with the life ?
In regard to the question: “Given an assessment scale from (1) to (10), where (1) stands for “very much dissatisfied” and (10) for “very much satisfied”, how would you assess your own satisfaction or dissatisfaction, in general, with the life?” the outcome was in average (4.89), which reflects, generally said, the dissatisfaction of the Palestinian people with the life conditions.
In their reply to the question: “If the immigration possibility to the West would be open to you, would you immigrate or stay in your country?” (55.3 %) said “I would stay”, (38.3 %) “I would immigrate” and (6.3 %) said:” I don’t know”.
Methodology of the Survey Study:
Mr. Elias Kukali, a staff member of the Research and Studies’ Section at the PCPO, said that all interviews of this survey were conducted inside the respondents’ homes, i.e. face-to-face during different working hours, at least five hours a’ day, including the evening time, in order to ensure proper presentation of those sub-groups of the population, which would otherwise be difficult to reach and selecting one individual in each household using the Last Birthday Method. The choices were taken from a total of (156) election sites, from which (116) are located in the West Bank and (40) sites in Gaza Strip.
Mr. E. Kukali has further established that the margin of error in this poll was (+- 3.6 %) at a confidence level of (95 %). He added that the rate of the female respondents in this survey was (48.1 %) and that of the male respondents was (51.9 %) . The distribution of the random sample between the Palestinian two major regions was (62.5 %) in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and (37.5 %) in Gaza Strip, allocated as follows: (49.1 %) urban areas, (31.6 %) rural areas and (19.3 %) refugee camps. The average age of the sample respondents was (32.8) years.
Poll No. 168 Date: November 4, 2009 Dr. Nabil Kukali Beit Sahour, Palestine Tel: +970-2-2774846 Fax: +970-2-2774892 Mobile: +970-599-726878 firstname.lastname@example.org www.pcpo.org