Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Palestinians want Hamas reform-poll

Nearly three-quarters of Palestinians want the newly elected Hamas movement to drop its call for the destruction of Israel.

This came in an opinion poll released by the Ram Allah-based Near East Consulting Institute on Monday.

The survey also found that 84% of those surveyed in the West Bank and Gaza Strip want a peace agreement with Israel while 86% want Mahmoud Abbas, the moderate Palestinian Authority president, to remain in his post.
While Hamas's international reputation is based on its campaign of attacks against Israel, its popularity in the West Bank and Gaza stems in part from its providing a safety net for some of the poorest Palestinians.

Rather than indicate backing for Hamas's hard-line tactics, the survey found that 73% of respondents believed that Hamas should "change its position on the elimination of the state of Israel".

Not only did an overall 84% support a peace agreement with Israel, but 77% of Hamas voters also wanted a settlement.
Given this sentiment among the Palestinian people, along with the internal political pressure they're facing, I'm not sold on the notion that the hard-line rhetoric and hard-ass tactics coming from the west are likely to speed up reform.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree. Let's see what comes out of the Hamas election victory after a year or so.

Nobody desires peace more than those guys on both sides.

11:13 PM  

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