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Poll finds two thirds of Israelis support freezing peace talks

May 7, 2014 16:16

According to IDI/TAU poll, only 9% of Israelis see achieving peace with Palestinians or improving country's image as top priority.

PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh

PA President Abbas with Hamas PM Haniyeh 311 (R). (photo credit:REUTERS/Suhaib Salem)

More than two-thirds of Israeli Jews support the government’s decision to suspend negotiations with the Palestinian Authority after Fatah and Hamas signed a unity deal, according to a poll published Wednesday by the Israel Democracy Institute and Tel Aviv University.

The monthly Peace Index poll found 68 percent of Israeli Jews believe the decision made by the security cabinet two weeks ago was appropriate, while 27% disagree with the move.

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When asked about the US president’s assessment that neither Israeli nor Palestinian leaders showed the political will to make difficult decisions to sustain negotiations, only 39% of Israeli Jews said they agreed both sides were equally responsible for the negotiations’ failure. The percentage disagreeing with Obama was 56%.

As well, 58% of Jewish Israelis said the Hamas-Fatah reconciliation was dangerous. The same number said the unity deal would not increase legitimacy for decisions made by the PA. Plus, 31% said the unity deal was not dangerous, and 34% said it would add legitimacy to the PA’s decisions.

When asked to cite which of the following should be the most important goal for the government today, 68% gave socioeconomic- related responses, 47% prioritized reducing socioeconomic gaps and 21% cited the creation of affordable housing. Only 10% chose strengthening military power, 9% said improving the country’s political status in the international community and 9% said reaching a peace agreement.

Asked about Israel’s achievements over 66 years, 76% said they were satisfied while 23% were not. As well, 82% said they were satisfied with military-security achievements, 41% were satisfied on foreign relations, and 31% on socioeconomic matters.

Seventy-three percent said they were optimistic about Israel’s future in the coming years, while 24% were pessimistic. The optimists included 77% of the self-identified Right, 77% of the Center, and 58% of the Left. Regarding their personal future, 85% called themselves optimistic and 11% pessimistic.

If given the opportunity to move to a different country, 80% of Israeli Jews would continue to live in Israel, while 17% would move to a different country. Those committed to staying include 93% of national-religious Israelis and 73% of secular Israelis.
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