Poll: Hamas popularity surges after war with Israel
The popularity of the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas has risen in the war-torn Gaza Strip and the occupied West Bank following 50 days of Israeli bombardment on the coastal enclave.
On Tuesday, the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research released the results, which indicates that 61 percent of Palestinians would elect senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh if elections were held in the strip today.
Thirty-two percent of Palestinians would vote for Mahmoud Abbas, the president of the Palestinian unity government.
The poll also suggested that 72 percent of the Palestinians favor the resistance movement’s armed struggle against the Israeli regime in comparison with the peace negotiations with Israel, backed by Abbas’s Fatah party and the West.
The poll, which had a margin of error of three percent, surveyed 1,270 Palestinians.
The research center said the polling kicked off on the last day of the Israeli war, on August 26, and continued during the first four days of the ceasefire.
The Egyptian-brokered truce, which took effect after Cairo negotiations, stipulates the ease of Israel’s seven-year-old blockade as well as the provision of a guarantee that Palestinian demands will be met.
Israeli warplanes and tanks started pounding the blockaded enclave in early July, inflicting heavy losses on the Palestinian land.
Almost 2,137 Palestinians, mostly civilians, including women, children and the elderly, were killed in 50 days of the Israeli onslaught on Gaza. Around 11,000 others were injured.
Tel Aviv says 69 Israelis were killed in the conflict, but Hamas puts the number at much higher.