HIsham Abu Taha
Arab News
October 13, 2008 - 8:00pm

A public opinion poll released yesterday showed that Palestinians believed the Oslo peace accord harmed their cause, and half of the respondents preferred simultaneous presidential and parliamentary elections in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank.

The poll, conducted by the Jerusalem Media and Communication Center (JMCC) in the first week of October, found that according to 41 percent of those surveyed the Oslo accord harmed the Palestinian national interests, compared to 20.4 who said it served them. Thirty-four percent said the Oslo accord made no difference.

The poll also said that 51.4 percent preferred holding presidential and parliamentary elections simultaneously in the Palestinian territories when the term of the Palestinian Parliament ends in January 2010, while 36.5 percent said they wanted the presidential elections to be held separately in 2009, at the end of President Mahmoud Abbas’ current term.

The poll found the popularity of Fatah and Hamas unchanged. It said that Fatah still maintains the lead with 30.5 percent of Palestinians favoring it, while 16.4 percent said they trust Hamas. The rest were noncommittal. The poll also showed that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas would easily win an election against Hamas’ Ismail Haniyeh.


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