Survey shows huge support for Islamic terrorist group Hamas in the West Bank. If elections held, Hamas chief set to defeat PLO’s Abbas
An overwhelming majority of Palestinians in the West Bank favor the formation of more terrorist groups to target Israel, a new poll shows.
“Seventy-two percent of Palestinians support the creation of additional armed groups in the West Bank akin to the Lion’s Den terror group that operates against Israel,” the Times of Israel reported Thursday citing an opinion poll conducted by the West Bank-based thinktank Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PCPSR).
The Lion’s Den, or Arin al-Usud, is the newest terrorist group to rear its ugly head in the Palestinian Authority-controlled West Bank. In October, the Israeli military carried out a counterterrorism raid in the the West Bank town of Nablus, killing Lion’s Den’s top commander and several other terror operatives. The Lion’s Den terror outfit is made up of former members of the PLO-Fatah-affiliated Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade, Iranian-backed Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ), and other terrorist groups.
The survey also showed huge support for the Gaza-based terrorist group Hamas in the West Bank. If the choice was between the current Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, who is affiliated with the PLO, and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, the Hamas candidate is expected to win overwhelmingly, the poll numbers indicate.
The Israeli TV channel i24News reported the findings of the survey:
According to a survey by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research published Tuesday, 72 percent of the Palestinian public said they favored forming armed groups. An example of one such group is the “Lions’ Den” – a Nablus-based group that does not take orders from the Palestinian Authority and is not part of the PA’s security services.
Meanwhile, 22 percent said they are against this and 59 percent said they were concerned that forming such armed groups could lead to further armed clashes with the PA’s security services. Conversely, 39 percent were not worried about such a scenario.
When asked about the most effective means of ending the “Israeli occupation,” 51 percent chose armed struggle, 23 percent of respondents said popular resistance and 21 percent opted for diplomatic negotiations with Israel. In comparison, back in September, 41 percent chose armed struggle and 30 percent chose negotiations.
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas’s approval ratings, meanwhile, continued its consistent years-long drop. Only 23 percent said they were satisfied with Abbas’s performance, with dissatisfaction at a whopping 73 percent.
“Moreover, a vast majority of 75 percent of the public wants president Abbas to resign while only 20 percent want him to remain in office,” the survey said. “Three months ago, 74 percent said they want Abbas to resign.”
If Abbas and senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh were to face off in elections, the survey indicated that Haniyeh would receive more support than Abbas, 54 percent to 36 percent.
The study comes as terrorist activities in the Palestinian-administered territories of the West Bank are once again on the rise, with terrorists targeting Israeli civilians and armed forces. In recent months, terrorist outfits like Al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Brigade and Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) are increasingly using West Bank cities as the staging ground for terror attacks inside Israel.
Just like the West Bank, Gaza—which has been under the control of the Hamas terror group for over 15 years—also continues to be a breeding ground for various other terrorist outfits, including the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP).
Last week, Hamas celebrated the 35th anniversary of its founding by renewing the pledge to intensify its campaign of jihad terrorism and destroy the state of Israel.
“The officials said this year’s anniversary of the founding of Hamas would be held under the slogan “‘We are headed toward Jerusalem with a roaring flood’,” The Jerusalem Post reported. “On the eve of the anniversary, Hamas called on Palestinians to step up their ‘resistance and revolution’ against Israel.”DONATE
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