Support for two-state solution shrinks

Poll reveals little trust between Israelis, PA residents. Few believe Trump will press sides back to negotiating table.

Arutz Sheva Staff,

Trump and Netanyahu at press conference
Trump and Netanyahu at press conference
Avi Ohayaon

A survey released after the much-anticipated meeting between President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu shows support for the two-state solution is in decline.

The “Mishal Amim” poll, conducted by the Tammy Steinmetz Center for Peace Studies in December, 2016 reveals shrinking support for the two-state solution among both Israelis and the residents of the Palestinian Authority.

The results of the survey, released on Thursday, show that only 55% of Israelis and 44% of PA Arabs support a two-state solution. That’s a significant decrease compared to the last survey, conducted in June, which found 59% of Israelis and 51% of the Palestinian Authority Arabs supporting the two-state solution.

In addition to weakening support for a two-state solution, the poll also showed exceedingly low levels of trust between the two sides. Seventy-one percent of Israelis say that they don’t trust Arabs who reside in the Palestinian Authority, while 86% of PA residents say they do not trust Israeli Jews.

More than half (51%) of Israeli Jews believe there are no mutually-beneficial steps that can be taken towards peace. Nearly as many (48%) Israeli Arabs agreed that negotiations are zero-sum game between Israel and the Palestinian Authority – that if one side benefits it must mean a loss to the other side. Sixty-eight percent of Palestinian Authority residents shared this sentiment.

Last night US President Donald Trump, in a joint press conference with Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, referred to this issue.

"Two-state and one-state ... I can live with either one," Trump said, noting that the decision on the nature of the solution to the conflict must be reached through direct negotiations between the parties.

Only 10% of PA residents and about a quarter of Israelis believe Trump will push the two sides back to the negotiating table.

The Mishal Amim poll surveyed 1,270 residents of the Palestinian Authority and 1,207 Israeli citizens throughout December, 2016.