Palestinian youth in the West Bank are split down the middle between those who support and those who oppose the two-state solution, a new poll found. 47.4 percent of West Bank Palestinian youth said they back a two-state solution, whereas 47.7 percent said they oppose it. The poll of 650 West Bank Palestinians between the ages of 18-30 was conducted February 1-5 by Arab World for Research and Development (AWRAD), a Ramallah-based research and polling institute.
The findings marked an increase in support for the two-state solution among West Bank Palestinian youth compared to those of a similar AWRAD poll conducted in 2016, which found that 41% support a two-state solution, while 56% oppose it.AWRAD president Nader Said explained the slight increase in support for the two-state solution as a response to the lack of “serious” alternatives.“The two-state solution is still the only solution that is being discussed in a serious manner,” Said told The Jerusalem Post. “The one-state solution is still an abstraction and not a part of the popular debate.”Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has consistently stated his support for a two-state solution as the only viable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Fatah Central Committee Member Azzam al-Ahmad said on Monday that Abbas affirmed his support for a two-state solution in a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.Said, however, added that future support for the two-state solution could drop if tangible steps to achieve it are not taken.“Today we are looking at a situation where negotiations have not led to much progress in the peace process and Gaza and the West Bank are divided,” Said stated. “It should not be a surprise if young Palestinians change their thinking in the future, if the status quo prevails.”The poll also found that 41% of Palestinian youth are in favor of Abbas’s approach to achieving a just solution for the Palestinians, whereas 19% back Hamas and Islamic Jihad. The remaining 40% said they did not know.
Palestinians caution Trump against abandoning two-state concept (credit: REUTERS)