There is a clear preference among Israelis and Palestinians for a comprehensive political solution as opposed to an interim solution, according to a joint Israeli-Palestinian poll.
The poll was conducted by the Harry S. Truman Institute for the Advancement of Peace at Hebrew University in Jerusalem and the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in Ramallah between the 11th and 16th of December.
According to the poll, 58 percent of Israelis and 81 percent of Palestinians prefer a comprehensive solution to the current conflict, while only 30 percent of Israelis and 16 percent of Palestinians prefer an interim agreement.
Additionally, 28 percent of Palestinians polled support the creation of a demilitarized state, while 70 percent oppose the creation of an independent Palestinian state without a military or strong security force.
In contrast, 62 percent of Israeli respondents supported a demilitarized Palestinian state, while 36 percent opposed this.
Regarding Jerusalem, 39 percent of Palestinian respondents supported a compromise in which east Jerusalem would be the Palestinian capital, with the Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem under Palestinian jurisdiction and Jewish neighborhoods under Israeli jurisdiction, and the western wall and Jewish quarter remaining under Israeli jurisdiction; 50 percent of Palestinian respondents opposed this.
Forty-three percent of Israeli respondents supported the release of Marwan Barghouti and negotiation with him if necessary to reaching a peace agreement with Palestinians. 53 percent of opposed this.
Also, 66 percent of Israelis polled supported negotiations with a Palestinian unity government including Hamas if necessary to reach a compromise, and 54 percent of Israelis even support compromise with the Hamas government itself in order to reach one.
In support of mutual recognition
Among Palestinians, 21 percent believe that the peace process will not bring an end to occupation and that militant means should be used. 36 percent believe that the peace process should be continued, since it might work, but that militant means should be used simultaneously.
According to the poll, 27 percent of Palestinians believe that the peace process has not failed and simply needs additional time to take hold, with a cessation of militant means in the interim. 11 percent believe that the violence is responsible for the deterioration of the peace process and that calm must be achieved in order to renew it.
Following the peace process, most Palestinians (58 percent) and Israelis (63 percent) agreed that, pursuant to a permanent arrangement, both sides must mutually recognize Israel as the Jewish state and 'Palestine' as the Palestinian state.
Regarding aspects of the conflict itself, 48 percent of Palestinians believe that Qassam rockets help Palestinian interests and 48 percent believe it harms Palestinian interests.
Fifty-two percent of Israeli respondents said that no side won the current conflict, 28 percent believe that the Palestinians won, 5 percent believe that Israel won, and 13 believe that both sides won.
Among Palestinians, 24 percent believe that they won, 27 percent believe that Israel won, 29 percent believe neither side won and 18 percent believe both sides won.
Forty-nine percent of the respondents agreed with and 49 percent of the Palestinian respondents disagreed with the statement that the intifada achieved national and political objectives that would not have been achieved via negotiation.
Regarding internal Palestinian issues, 36 percent of Palestinians polled said they would vote for Hamas were elections held today, while 42 percent would vote for Fatah.
In a race for the presidency between Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh, 46 percent of respondents said they would vote for Abbas, while 45 percent said they would vote for Haniyeh.