Israelis back sovereignty plan - but few believe it will happen this year

Majority of Israelis back applying sovereignty to parts of Judea and Samaria - but have mixed feelings on what to do with Arab residents.

David Rosenberg ,

Netanyahu with Jordan Valley sovereignty map
Netanyahu with Jordan Valley sovereignty map
Flash 90

A majority of Israeli Jews support Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s plan to apply Israeli sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria, a new poll released Sunday shows.

Last September, Prime Minister Netanyahu vowed to apply Israeli sovereignty first to the Jordan Valley, then to all remaining Israeli towns in Judea and Samaria, in keeping with the Trump administration’s Middle East peace plan, while leaving large Palestinian Authority population centers outside of Israel’s sovereign borders.

According to a survey conducted by the Midgam polling institute and published by the Israel Democracy Institute’s Guttman Center for Public Opinion and Policy Research on Sunday, 51.7% of Israeli Jews and 8.8% of Israeli Arabs support the sovereignty plan, compared to 27.9% of Israeli Jews and 51.9% of Israeli Arabs who oppose the plan. Just over a fifth (20.4%) of Jews and 39.4% of Arabs had no opinion on the plan.

However, the poll also found that few Israelis believe the plan will actually be implemented in the coming year.

Just 4.9% of Jews and 5.8% of Arabs said the chances of the sovereignty plan being implemented are “very high”, with a total of 33.3% of Jews and 24.7% of Arabs believing there is a good chance of the plan being implemented over the next year.

By comparison, 50.4% of Jews and 45.2% of Israeli Arabs said the chances of the plan being implemented in the next 12 months are low.

While Israeli Jews back the sovereignty plan by a margin of 51.7% to 27.9%, they are strongly divided with regards to what status Palestinian Arab residents of the areas to be placed under Israeli sovereignty in Judea and Samaria should receive.

A plurality of 36.6% say Palestinian Arab residents living in areas slated for Israeli sovereignty should receive no additional status beyond what they hold today – with no official status in the State of Israel.

Less than a quarter (23.7%) of Israeli Jews believe Palestinian Arab residents living in the areas slated for Israeli sovereignty should be given permanent residency status – but not citizenship, while 20.2% say they should be given full Israeli citizenship, including the right to vote.

Israeli Arabs, by comparison, back granting Palestinian Arab residents with full Israeli citizenship, with 47% backing the granting of citizenship status, compared to just 4.5% who favor granting permanent resident status, and 9.3% who say Palestinian Arab residents should receive no legal status.