Two-thirds of Palestinians support stabbing attacks against Israelis

Two-thirds of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza support stabbing attacks against Israelis, with support for a violent intifada growing, a poll conducted by the Palestinian Centre for Policy and Survey Research has claimed.

Around half of all respondents, interviewed earlier this month, said that the current confrontations will escalate and two thirds said that they believed that an armed uprising was more likely to yield results than negotiations, according to the poll published on Monday.

Some 66 percent also want Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to step down, with 68 percent of those surveyed saying they no longer believed in the two-state solution due to Israeli settlement expansion and wanted to scrap the deal penned back in 1993.

According to the findings, if presidential elections are held today, a Hamas candidate would likely win a clear victory against Abbas, while if parliamentary elections were, Hamas and Fatah would receive a third of the vote each.

Abbas’s approval ratings have slid from 44 percent six months ago to only 35 percent today.

Marwan Barghouti, the imprisoned Fatah leader, is still seen as Fatah’s only hope of defeating Hamas, the survey found.

The youth, in particular, were weary of the current security agreements between the PA and Israel and those aged 18 to 22 were the most likely to express support for an armed intifada.

However, the majority of people continued to think that the struggle was nationalistic in nature, rather than religious. Almost 90 percent of people said that the Islamic State group was a radical organisation that misinterpreted Islam, although in Gaza 10 percent of people said that IS was following the right kind of Islam.

Since the recent uptick in violence began back in early October, more than 119 Palestinians, including alleged attackers, have been killed by Israeli military and settlers, according to Maan news. Almost 20 Israelis have also been killed in attacks carried out by Palestinians.

The PLO Central Council member Muhammad Eshteyyah recently told reporters that 85 percent of Palestinian deaths could have been avoided if Israel did not have a “shoot-to-kill” policy when it came to dealing with alleged attackers.

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