Support for the two-state solution is rising in Israel, a new poll has revealed, however most people do not believe it is achievable within the next five years.
Support among Israelis for a Palestinian state to be set-up is at 53 per cent, a decline of two per cent since December, and at 52 per cent among Arabs both in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, an increase of eight per cent.
Over half of the Palestinians, or 52.3 per cent, believe a two-state solution is no longer viable, and so did 43.9 per cent of Israelis. However, 58 per cent of Palestinians and 61.4 of Israelis opposed having one-state for Arabs and Israelis.
In a question on the idea of a confederation of a Palestinian state and the State of Israel – in which citizens of each country could live on each other’s territory securely under their laws, and to have the economy handled jointly by both states – a vast majority of 57.5 per cent of Palestinians and 58.3 per cent of all Israelis opposed the idea.
When asked about their perception of each other, 39.6 per cent of Palestinians said they agree or certainly agree with the statement “I feel fear toward Israeli Jews”, and 67.5 per cent of Jewish Israelis agreed or certainly agreed with the statement “I feel fear toward Palestinians”.
As for whether they thought the other side wants peace, 53.3 per cent of Palestinians said they disagree or certainly disagree with the statement “Most Israelis want peace,” and 62.2 per cent of Israelis said they disagreed or certainly disagree with the statement “Most Arabs want peace”.
The poll, named the “Palestinian-Israeli Pulse: A Joint Poll” was published on Monday. It was conducted in June and early July, and took representative samples of 1,200 Palestinians in the occupied West Bank and Gaza, along with 900 Israelis.
Each of them was given a survey conducted by Tel Aviv University’s Tami Steinmetz Centre for Peace Research and the Palestinian Centre for Policy and Survey Research in Ramallah. Funding for the survey and poll was granted by the European Union and the Netherlands Representative Office in Ramallah.
In May, a poll was taken which showed that under half of Israeli Arabs support the idea of a Palestinian state, and only four per cent would ever want to live in such a state.