Poll: 70% of Palestinians Think Abbas Should Step Down
A new poll has found that the vast majority of Palestinians think that Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas should resign from his position.
According to the Palestinian Center for Policy and Research, 70% of Palestinians want Abbas to step down while only 26% want him to stay on. Of the two Palestinian regions, 64% of Palestinians in the West Bank want Abbas to resign as do 80% in the Gaza Strip, which is run by Hamas.
Abbas’ overall approval rating is at 31% positive and 66% negative. His policies are not viewed in a positive light by the Palestinians, as 61% don’t think they can criticize the Palestinian Authority (PA) “without fear” and 77% view the PA as corrupt. Only 12% view the conditions of the West Bank as “positive.”
The 70% number is an increase from 67% three months, suggesting that Abbas’ electoral prospects in an election following a reconciliation government are dwindling. The poll found that in a three-way race between Abbas, terrorist Marwan Barghouti and Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh, Abbas would get trounced, as 41% would support Barghouti and 36% would support Haniyeh while Abbas would only receive 18% support.
The full poll results can be read here.
The poll numbers have come amidst Abbas facing pressure from Jordan and Egypt to turn down his rhetoric against the United States following President Trump’s Jerusalem move:
Egypt's Sisi and Jordan's Abdullah to Abbas: Cool down! We don't want to damage our ties with the US. https://t.co/qTDRDNolpN
— Khaled Abu Toameh (@KhaledAbuToameh) December 12, 2017
Abbas is refusing to meet with Vice President Mike Pence in light of Trump’s move.
Abbas has ruled the West Bank with an iron fist. He was elected as the PA president in January 2005, he has prevented elections from being held since then in order to hold onto power. Abbas’ record includes jailing journalists and political opponents, even going as far as torturing them.