Support for Hamas has surged among Palestinian Arabs since the recent 11-day conflict with Israel, The Hill reported Tuesday, citing to a new poll released by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research.
The study, which included in-person interviews with 1,200 Palestinian Arabs in Judea and Samaria and Gaza last week, found that about 53 percent believe Hamas is “most deserving of representing and leading the Palestinian people.”
Comparatively, just 14 percent said the same of Palestinian Authority (PA) chairman Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah party.
The poll also revealed that an overwhelming majority of Palestinian Arabs, 77 percent, believe that Hamas came out as victorious in its 11-day conflict with Israel, with only 1 percent saying the IDF was victorious.
Roughly 18 percent said neither side could be considered a winner in the fighting, with 2 percent saying both sides won.
65 percent of respondents said that Hamas achieved its objective in firing rockets toward Israel by forcing the US to stop the forced evictions of Palestinian Arab families in the nearby Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood in eastern Jerusalem.
The poll also follows Abbas’ recent decision to postpone the Palestinian elections. The PA chairman cited Israel’s refusal to allow Arabs residing in eastern Jerusalem to vote as the reason for the postponement.
The PA has continuously demanded that Israel permit Arabs residing in eastern Jerusalem to vote in the elections. In this regard, PA officials have been working in the international arena in an attempt to get Israel to agree to this demand.
This would not be the first time that the PA has used Israel’s refusal to permit Jerusalem Arabs to vote as an excuse not to hold elections at all.
Hamas, which opposes the postponement of the elections, has threatened a confrontation with the Palestinian Authority in response to the move.