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Friday, September 23, 2011
PSR Poll No. 41 - Joint Palestinian Israeli press release

PSR Poll No. 41 - Joint Palestinian Israeli press release

21 September 2011

PRESS RELEASE

Joint Israeli-Palestinian Poll, September 2011

Over 80% of the Palestinians support turning to the UN to obtain recognition
of a Palestinian state. About 70% of Israelis think that if the UN
recognizes a Palestinian state Israel should accept the decision

These are the results of the most recent poll conducted jointly by the Harry
S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace at the Hebrew
University of Jerusalem and the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey
Research in Ramallah. This joint survey was conducted with the support of
the Ford Foundation Cairo office and the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung in
Ramallah and Jerusalem.

In the poll we explored Israeli and Palestinian attitudes regarding the
Palestinian appeal to the UN to obtain recognition as an independent state.
We also explored salient domestic issues in each public.

83% of the Palestinians believe they should go to the UN to obtain
recognition for their state.

Majorities on both sides, 77% of the Palestinians and 79% of the Israelis,
believe that the US will use its veto power in the UN Security Council in
order to prevent the UN from admitting the state of Palestine as a UN
member.

69% of Israelis think Israel should accept the decision if indeed the UN
recognizes a Palestinian state, and either start negotiations with the
Palestinians about its implementation (34%) or not allow any change on the
ground by the Palestinians (35%); 16% believe Israel should oppose the
decision and intensify the construction in the settlements; 7% think that
Israel should annex to Israel the PA territory; and 4% think Israel should
invade the PA and use force in order to prevent the establishment of a
Palestinian state.

If the UN recognizes the Palestinian state, 26% of Palestinians support a
return to armed attacks on army and settlers to force Israel to withdraw
from their state, 37% think peaceful non-violent resistance can force
Israelis to withdraw; 30% think negotiations with Israel can bring it to
withdraw. 54% of Palestinians in the West Bank say they would join large
peaceful demonstrations in the West Bank and Jerusalem if they were to take
place after the recognition of the Palestinian state.

As to the recent social protest in Israel, 44% of Israelis think the protest
movement should turn into a political party and run in the elections. If
indeed such a party participates in the next elections, 27% of the Israelis
claim they will vote for it. Two thirds of Palestinians say the rising cost
of living and their inability to provide a better future for themselves and
their families could push them to demonstrate as well.

The Palestinian sample size was 1200 adults interviewed face-to-face in the
West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza Strip in 120 randomly selected locations
between September 15 and 17, 2011. The margin of error is 3%. The Israeli
sample includes 605 adult Israelis interviewed by phone in Hebrew, Arabic,
or Russian between September 11-14, 2011. The margin of error is 4.0%. The
poll was planned and supervised by Prof. Yaacov Shamir, the Harry S. Truman
Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace and the Department of
Communication and Journalism at the Hebrew University, and Prof. Khalil
Shikaki, Director of the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research
(PSR).

For further details on the Palestinian survey contact PSR director, Prof.
Khalil Shikaki or Walid Ladadweh, at tel. 02-2964933 or email
pcpsr@pcpsr.org. On the Israeli survey, contact Prof Yaacov Shamir at tel.
03-6419429 or email jshamir@mscc.huji.ac.il.

MAIN FINDINGS

(A) Israeli and Palestinian attitudes and expectations regarding the
recognition by the UN of the Palestinian state

74% of the Palestinians believe they should go to the UN in September to
obtain recognition for their state, since there is no point to return to
negotiations now.
Majorities on both sides believe that the US will use its veto power in the
UN Security Council in order to prevent the UN from admitting the state of
Palestine as a UN member. 77% of the Palestinians and 79% of the Israelis
think so, while 16% and 17% respectively think that the US will not use its
veto power. A majority of Israelis (60%) also believes that if the
Palestinians turn to the UN General Assembly for recognition of a
Palestinian state, they will succeed to obtain a two thirds majority; 36%
believe they will not succeed to obtain this majority.
50% of Palestinians think that a state of Palestine will become a UN member
in September, while 43% do not believe so. Among Israelis, 37% think this
will happen while 57% do not believe so.
A majority of Israelis (57%) believe that if Palestinians appeal for the
recognition of the UN, Israel should take diplomatic measures to prevent
such a step; 20% think Israel should support this step, and 13% believe
Israel should threaten to annex the Palestinian Authority territories in
this case.
If indeed the UN recognizes a Palestinian state, 69% of the Israelis think
Israel should accept the decision and either start negotiations with the
Palestinians about its implementation (34%) or not allow any change on the
ground by the Palestinians (35%). 27% believe Israel should oppose the
decision, of them 16% think it should intensify the construction in the
settlements; 7% that it should annex to Israel the PA territory, and 4%
that it should invade the PA and use force in order to prevent the
establishment of a Palestinian state.
On the Palestinian side, 68% believe that if the Palestinians request UN
membership, Israel will respond by stopping transfer of custom funds to the
PA and making conditions of occupation harsher with more checkpoints and
settlement activities, 10% believe Israel will only stop the transfer of
custom funds, 12% think Israel will not stop transfer of custom funds but
conditions of occupation will become harsher; and 8% believe Israel will do
nothing and the status quo will prevail.
We asked Palestinians how they think Palestinians can force Israel to
withdraw from the territories, if the UN recognizes the Palestinian state,
and Israelis what they think Palestinians will do. 46% of Israelis think the
Palestinians will resume the Intifada including armed confrontations, while
31% think they will start non-violent resistance such as peaceful
demonstrations. More Palestinians however think peaceful non-violent
resistance can force Israelis to withdraw (37%) than armed attacks on army
and settlers (26%). 30% of the Palestinians think negotiations with Israel
can bring it to withdraw, and 16% of the Israelis think the Palestinians
will resume negotiations.
54% of Palestinians in the West Bank say they would join large peaceful
demonstrations in the West Bank and Jerusalem if they were to take place
after the recognition of the Palestinian state. 44% will not participate.
We asked Palestinians what they think the PA should do after the UN
recognizes the Palestinian state in September. 75% think the PA president
and government should enforce Palestinian sovereignty over all the
territories of the West Bank, for example by opening roads in area C, start
building an airport in the Jordan valley, and deploy Palestinian security
forces in area C even if this leads to confrontations with the Israeli army
and settlers. 21% think the PA should not do that. Similarly, 73% think the
PA should insist on assuming control over the Allenby Bridge terminal from
the Israeli side even if this leads to the closure of the terminal. 23%
think the PA should not do that.
28% of Palestinians and 10% of Israelis expect that after the Palestinians
seek membership in the UN, there will be negotiations between the sides and
armed confrontations will stop; 28% and 38% respectively think that there
will be negotiations between the sides but some armed attacks will continue;
and 23% of Palestinians and 49% of Israelis expect the sides not to return
to negotiations and armed confrontations not to stop.

(B) Conflict management and threat perceptions

Majorities on both sides - 72% of Israelis and 64% of Palestinians - do not
think that if a peaceful popular revolt like in Egypt or Tunisia were to
erupt against the Israeli occupation in the West Bank it would be capable of
ending occupation. Only 19% of Israelis and 34% of Palestinians think it
would be capable of ending occupation. Nonetheless, 54% of the Palestinians
believe that if large peaceful demonstrations were to take place in the
West Bank and East Jerusalem, they would contribute to speeding the process
of ending Israeli occupation.
In our poll we also examine periodically Israelis’ and Palestinians’
readiness for a mutual recognition of identity as part of a permanent status
agreement and after all issues in the conflict are resolved and a
Palestinian State is established. Our current poll shows that 58% of the
Israelis support such a mutual recognition of identity and 36% oppose it.
Among Palestinians, 46% support and 52% oppose it.
Among Palestinians, 73% are worried and 27% are not worried that they or a
member of their family may be hurt by Israelis in their daily life or that
their land would be confiscated or home demolished. Among Israelis, 58% are
worried and 42% are not worried that they or their family may be harmed by
Arabs in their daily life.
The level of threat on both sides regarding the aspirations of the other
side in the long run is very high. 58% of Palestinians think that Israel’s
goals are to extend its borders to cover all the area between the Jordan
River and the Mediterranean Sea and expel its Arab citizens, and 19% think
the goals are to annex the West Bank while denying political rights to the
Palestinians. The modal category among Israelis is that the Palestinians’
aspirations in the long run are to conquer the state of Israel and destroy
much of the Jewish population in Israel (38%); 20% think the goals of the
Palestinians are to conquer the State of Israel. Only 21% of the
Palestinians think Israel’s aspirations in the long run are to withdraw from
part or all of the territories occupied in 1967; and 37% of Israelis think
the aspirations of the Palestinians are to regain some or all of the
territories conquered in 196
(C) Domestic developments
34% of Israelis think that the main reason for the eruption of the protest
is the big gap in wealth distribution, 30% think it is the need for welfare
policies that will relieve citizens’ economic difficulties, 20% think it is
the housing problem of young people, and 12% believe the main reason is a
left wing plot to bring down the government.
17% of the Israelis declared they participated in person in the protest.
Among those who participated in the protest, 13% claim they built a tent,
35% expressed their views regarding the protest on the internet, 41% signed
a petition, and 88% say they participated in a demonstration.
Among the general Israeli public, 81% support the social justice protest,
and between 64% and 89% support their specific demands.
44% of Israelis think the protest movement should turn into a political
party and run in the elections. If indeed such a party participates in the
next elections, 27% of the Israelis claim they will vote for it.
24% of the Palestinians regard the widespread popular demonstrations for
social justice in Israel as something good for the Palestinians; 25% regard
these demonstrations as something bad, and 45% think they have no effect on
Palestinians.
Interestingly, 66% of Palestinians say the rising cost of living and their
inability to provide a better future for themselves and their families would
push them to demonstrate, while 33% say these concerns would not push them
to demonstrate in order to demand a better standard of living and a better
life
This joint survey was conducted with the support of the Ford Foundation
Cairo office and the Konrad Adenauer Foundation in Ramallah and Jerusalem.

End of press release

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