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Support rose for Hamas and armed struggle after war, poll says

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Itongadol.- Another public opinion poll published on Tuesday showed that Operation Protective Edge has increased support for Hamas and armed struggle among Palestinians at the expense of Fatah and negotiations with Israel.

Previous polls have also indicated a rise in Hamas’s popularity following the military confrontation with Israel over the summer.

The latest poll, conducted by the Jerusalem Media & Communications Center, covered some 1,200 Palestinians and was conducted in the West Bank and Gaza Strip between October 15 and October 19. It has a margin of error of three percent.

The majority of respondents (53%) said the war achieved the Palestinians people’s interests, while 21% said it harmed their interests.

The poll found that the percentage of those who support military operations against Israel increased from 31% before the war to 42% after the confrontation.

According to the study, the war seems to have increased Hamas’s popularity at the expense of Fatah.

Trust in Hamas increased from 16% in April 2014 to 25% in October. Moreover, a majority of 61% of respondents said that Hamas’s rockets help achieve Palestinian goals.

The poll also indicated a drop in the percentage of Palestinians who support negotiations with Israel – from 54% in April this year to 52% in October.

Trust in Fatah dropped from 41% before the military confrontation to 35% after the war, the poll showed.

However, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas retained his status as the most trusted Palestinian personality.

Still, the poll found that support for Abbas dropped from 25% in April this year to 23% in October.

Meanwhile, trust in Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh rose from 13% before the war to 17% after the confrontation.

The poll showed that a majority of respondents (57%) considered Hamas to be the winning side in the war as opposed to 8% who believed Israel emerged triumphant.

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