Palestinians believe Fayyad is the man for the job

Majority want government headed by PA prime minister, view Fatah-Hamas reconciliation well; Poll: confidence in Abbas and Haniyeh.

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June 9, 2011 01:49
2 minute read.
PA PM visits W. Bank village of Dahyet al-Salam.

Salam Fayyad 311. (photo credit: Associated Press)

 
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A majority of Palestinians wants a government of independent figures and believes that Salam Fayyad is the most appropriate figure to head the government, according to a public opinion poll published on Wednesday.

Two-thirds of the respondents are optimistic regarding the support from world countries to the Palestinians in September, when the Palestinian Authority plans to ask for recognition of a state along the pre-1967 lines, the poll by the Jerusalem Media & Communications Center showed.

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A majority deems the Fatah-Hamas reconciliation agreement as positive and thinks it will be implemented on the ground, the poll, which has a 3 percentage point margin of error, showed.

The results also showed a rise in the level of confidence in PA President Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh.

When asked if they prefer a government with a majority of its ministers from Fatah, Hamas or independent figures, a majority of the respondents (50.8 percent) said it prefers a government of independent figures, compared with 26.5% who said they prefer a Fatah-majority government.

Regarding the most preferred figure to head the next unity government, the poll results showed that Fayyad is the most appropriate figure among the names of figures circulated in the media.

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About 44% chose Fayyad, while 12% said Jamal al-Khudari is the most appropriate figure.

According to the poll, which was conducted during the period between May 31 and June 4 with a random sample of 1198 Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza, a majority of respondents (79%) said they consider the reconciliation agreement a positive step that serves the national interest.

Twelve percent said the reconciliation agreement would not make any difference. A majority of respondents (81%) expressed optimism regarding the implementation of the agreement on the ground.

With regards to the PA’s intention to ask for UN recognition of a state in September, the poll showed that two-thirds of the respondents (63%) expressed optimism toward this step and the possibility of getting support from the majority of the world’s countries.

However, about 30% said they feel pessimistic regarding the chances to get international recognition.

The poll showed that last month’s speech by US President Barack Obama made 44% of Palestinians more pessimistic regarding finding a solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict.

A majority of 91% still insists that the US is biased in favor of Israel, the poll found.

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