Poll: Palestinians disillusioned with unity gov't

Over half of 800 interviewed say coalition won't be able to bring about sanctions lift; 41% trust neither Fatah nor Hamas.

abbas Haniyeh 88 (photo credit: )
abbas Haniyeh 88
(photo credit: )
Palestinians are increasingly disillusioned with political parties and their new unity government and feel more threatened by growing lawlessness, according to a poll released Sunday. The survey was conducted by the independent polling company Neareast Consulting among 800 respondents and had an error margin of 3.45 percentage points. More than half, or 53 percent, said they don't expect the new Hamas-Fatah coalition, set up in March, to be able to lift international sanctions on the Palestinian Authority. The foreign aid freeze was imposed after Hamas came to power last year. Forty-seven percent said they expected the sanctions to be lifted. Half the respondents said they feel less secure than in the past, while nearly 14 percent said they feel more secure. The rule of militias and vigilante gunmen, particularly in Gaza, has been one of the byproducts of the second Intifada which began in 2000. Pollster Jamil Rabah said Palestinians are increasingly pessimistic. "People thought the national unity government will lead to a better situation," he said. "The euphoria over the formation of the unity government has decreased." Palestinians are also becoming increasingly disillusioned with political parties, the poll suggested. Some 41 percent said they trust none of the parties, up from 35 percent in December. Support for Fatah movement of Palestinian Authority Chairman Mahmoud Abbas was 31 percent, the same as in December, while backing for Hamas dropped from nearly 27 percent to 22 percent, the poll said. "People are not pleased with faction in general," Rabah said.