The Media Line led over twenty years ago in pioneering the American independent news agency in the Middle East, arguably the first in the region. We have always stayed true to our mission: to provide you with contextual sourced and trustworthy news. In an age of fake news masquerading as journalism, The Media Line plays a crucial role in providing fact-based news that deserves your support.

We're proud of the dozens of young students we've trained in our Press and Policy Student Program who will form the vanguard of the next generation of journalists to the benefit of countless millions of news readers.

Look out for exciting new additions as we enter 2022.

We thank our loyal readers and wish you all the happiest of holidays.
The Media Line

Non-profit news needs public support.
Please support us with your generous contributions:
Most Palestinians Believe Long-Awaited Elections Will Take Place
Security measures are taken in front of Central Election Commission building after Palestinian authorities opened registration for the legislative elections, scheduled for May 22, in Gaza City, Gaza on March 20, 2021. (Mustafa Hassona/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

Most Palestinians Believe Long-Awaited Elections Will Take Place

Survey of West Bank and Gaza residents finds Hamas-Fatah reconciliation, economy, graft, Gaza blockade top citizens’ concerns 

Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza Strip are increasingly confident that the Palestinian Authority’s first elections since 2006 will take place as scheduled, and Marwan Barghouti, imprisoned by Israel since 2002 for his involvement in several murders and terror attacks executed in Israel during the Second Intifada, remains their most popular political figure, according a poll released on Tuesday by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR).

The respondents’ top priorities going into the May 22 Palestinian Legislation Council (PLC) and July 31 presidential votes are uniting the West Bank and the Gaza Strip; improving economic conditions; combating corruption; and ending the Israeli-Egyptian blockade of Gaza.

The largest percentage believes a Hamas electoral victory would be bad for all these priorities except combating corruption, where no negative impact is expected. This may be why the findings indicate a rise in the vote for Fatah and a decline in the willingness to vote for Hamas compared to the Ramallah-based PSR’s findings three months ago.

Some 61% of respondents expect the parliamentary vote to take place soon, up from 32% three months ago. If Israel refuses to allow elections to take place in east Jerusalem, 65% said east Jerusalemites should vote just outside the city limits. Another 27% demand the cancelation of elections if Israel does not allow east Jerusalemites to vote in their city.

But only 42%of Palestinians believe the elections will be free and fair, and 48% think they will not be free and fair. Moreover, 69% of those who responded to the survey believe that if Hamas wins, Fatah will not accept the results, and 60% say that if Fatah wins, Hamas will do the same.

A major concern for Fatah is whether party dissidents will lead independent electoral lists in the PLC vote, splitting the movement’s vote and leading to a possible repeat of the scenario that led to Hamas’ victory in the legislative contest back in 2006.

Former Fatah Gaza strongman Mohammed Dahlan, who is living in exile in Abu Dhabi, and Nasser al-Qudwa, former PA President Yasser Arafat’s nephew, have both considered leading such independent lists.

More seriously, if Barghouti, serving five life sentences in Israel for the murders committed when he led Fatah’s Tanzim paramilitary offshoot during the Second Intifada, presents his own candidates list, the movement’s vote would split into near-equal parts, according to the survey.

As for the presidency, the public shows a clear preference to see Barghouti (22%) lead the PA over the incumbent Mahmoud Abbas (14%) of Fatah, or Hamas Political Bureau Chairman Ismail Haniyeh (9%). The findings indicate a limited increase in demand for Abbas’ resignation, despite the fact that he is polling slightly better at 47% in a one-on-one competition against Haniyeh, with 46%, than he did three months ago.

Only 23% of the public think Abbas is the best Fatah candidate for president; and 57% view him as the wrong choice. Some 49% of Palestinians prefer Barghouti, 12% prefer Dahlan, 5% back current Prime Minister Mohammad Shtayyeh, and 4% support Qudwa.

There is a limited rise in optimism, to 34%, for a Fatah-Hamas reconciliation and a rise to 43% in the perception that West Bankers can criticize the PA without fear.

Almost half of the public, at 43%, which is slightly fewer than three months ago, is still reluctant or unwilling to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

A majority of 58% opposes to a return to bilateral Palestinian-Israeli negotiations without preconditions, despite the optimism generated by the election of the Biden administration.

On the other hand, despite the International Criminal Court’s recent decision to assert jurisdiction over the occupied Palestinian territories, 66% of the public is pessimistic about the court’s ability to restrict Israeli behavior, while 25% expects it to impose at least some restrictions. In fact, a large majority, or 73%, thinks that no Israeli official will ever be prosecuted by the court, while 21% think one or more Israeli officials might be prosecuted.

The PSR interviewed 1,200 adults face to face in 120 randomly selected locations in the West Bank and Gaza between March 14 and 19. The margin of error is +/-3%.

 

Give the Gift of Trusted News!

Dear friends,

The Media Line is always there to report to you the stories and issues of the Middle East – completely and in context: TML is the source you can trust.

Know The Media Line to Know The Middle East!

Please support our ad-free, nonprofit news agency. Our seasoned journalists reporting from the Middle East are working day and night during these challenging, yet defining times; and our student interns are honing their knowledge and skills, preparing to emerge as tomorrow’s journalists.

You rely on us and we’re relying on you! Make your online tax-deductible donation here and contact us regarding donations through appreciated stock, donor advised funds, qualifying IRA distributions and other charitable instruments.

Thank you for confidence in The Media Line.
 
Felice Friedson
Founder, President

Invest in the
Trusted Mideast
News source.
We are on the
front lines.

Personalize Your News
Upgrade your experience by choosing the categories that matter most to you.
Click on the icon to add the category to your Personalize news
Browse Categories and Topics
Wake up to the Trusted Mideast News source Mideast Daily News Email
By subscribing, you agree to The Media Line terms of use and privacy policy.
Wake up to the Trusted Mideast News source Mideast Daily News Email
By subscribing, you agree to The Media Line terms of use and privacy policy.