Poll: 72% of Jewish Israelis view J'lem as divided

'Post' survey finds 74% of Israelis say they reject the idea of a Palestinian capital in any portion of Jerusalem.

June 5, 2013 07:08
2 minute read.
THE OLD CITY walls in east Jerusalem contrast against the modern buildings in west Jerusalem

View of Jerusalem 370. (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem/The Jerusalem Post)

Forty-six years after the Six Day War physically united Jerusalem under Jewish rule, 72 percent of Israeli Jews believe the city is functionally divided between Jews and Arabs, according to a Jerusalem Post/Rafi Smith Inc. poll.

However, 74% say they reject the idea of a Palestinian capital in any portion of Jerusalem, with the implication being that they prefer a united Jerusalem. Only 15% say they would support a divided plan for the city, whereby Israel would relinquish sovereignty over some eastern portions of the city to allow for a Palestinian capital there.

Data compiled by Rafi Smith, graphic created by Noa Amouyal

Among those polled, 67% support a two-state solution, but only 8% want a two-state solution based on the pre-1967 lines as proposed by the Palestinians and the Arab League, according to the poll conducted by the Rafi Smith Research Company on Monday.

Of the 500 Israeli Jewish adults polled, 21% were religious or haredi, 29% were traditional and 50% were secular.

The poll was conducted amidst a major United States push to rekindle direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations that have been largely frozen since 2008.

The Palestinian leadership in Ramallah has been officially pushing for a two-state solution based on the pre-1967 lines including a divided Jerusalem, in accordance with the Arab League plan, which allows for minor land swaps of equitable value.

The Israel government, in turn, wants a two-state solution, with a united Jerusalem under Israeli sovereignty, and the ability to retain all of the larger settlement blocs in Area C of the West Bank, including Ma’aleh Adumim, Ariel and the Gush Etzion bloc.

US Secretary of State John Kerry is looking to return to Israel for his fifth visit since March, in hopes of helping Israelis and Palestinians break the impasse.

On Wednesday, at the request of Meretz party leader MK Zehava Gal-On, the Knesset plenum will hold a debate, with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu present, on the question of the Arab League proposal.

On Monday Kerry urged Israelis to summon the courage to achieve peace at a public address before the American Jewish Committee in Washington.

But according to the Smith poll, Kerry is mostly speaking to the converted, as only 33% of Israelis reject the notion of a two-state solution.

The question facing the other 67% of those polled is what kind of final-status agreement should they stand behind. Only 8% of Israelis support a two-state solution based on the pre-1967 lines. Forty percent said they support a two-state solution in which Israel retained the major settlement blocs. Another 19% favored the Bayit Yehudi solution in which Israel annexes most if not all of Area C, so that it is able to retain all the settlements.

Significant differences were seen between secular and religious poll respondents on the question of a two-state solution.

A majority of the secular respondents, 83%, and only a minority of the religious respondents, 28%, said they supported a two-state solution. Similarly, 72% of religious respondents and 17% of secular respondents said they opposed a two-state solution.

The poll has a 4.5% margin of error.

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