A small majority of both Palestinians and Israelis support the two-state solution despite their differing views on the terms of a permanent settlement to peace negotiations, a survey published Monday found.
The survey, conducted jointly by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in Ramallah and the Jerusalem-based Israel Democracy Institute (IDI), showed that 51 percent of the Palestinians supported the two-state solution compared to 58.5 percent of Israelis – 53 percent among Jews and 87 percent among Palestinians with Israeli citizenship.
“Nonetheless, at least a quarter of the opposition to a permanent settlement on both sides is flexible and it is likely that its opinion might be changed with the right incentives,” the report stated.
Fewer Palestinians than Israelis supported a peace agreement based on compromise – 39 percent compared to 46 percent of surveyed Israelis.
The terms of the compromise included a de-militarized Palestinian state, an Israeli withdrawal to the Green Line with equal territorial exchange, family unification in Israel of 100,000 Palestinian refugees, West Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and East Jerusalem as the capital of Palestine, and splitting sovereignty of occupied East Jerusalem’s Old City between Jewish and Muslim holy sites.
In terms of the nature of peace talks, 44 percent of Palestinians said they preferred multilateral negotiations while 40 percent of Israelis said they preferred bilateral negotiations, in line with the views of their respective governments.
Meanwhile, a quarter of Israelis and 35 percent of Palestinians told the pollsters they supported a one-state solution.
All past efforts towards peace negotiations have failed to end the decades-long Israeli military occupation or bring Palestinians closer to an independent contiguous state.
The most recent spate of negotiations led by the US collapsed in April 2014
Israel claimed the process failed because the Palestinians refused to accept a US framework document outlining the way forward, while Palestinians pointed to Israel’s ongoing settlement building and the government’s refusal to release veteran prisoners.
The binational state – termed the “one-state solution” – has increasingly gained support among Palestinians, activist groups, and intellectuals purporting it as the most reasonable way of upholding Palestinian human rights and their internationally recognized right to return to lands they were expelled from during and after the establishment of Israel in 1948.