...some of the poll's findings cannot be doubted. The most striking one is that almost 94 percent of Palestinians object to any form of Israeli control over the Al-Aqsa compound - neither above nor below. Another interesting finding is that 82 percent of those polled are not willing to allow settlement blocs to remain under Israeli control. And most important of all: Close to 70 percent support the return of all refugees to their homeland (i.e., within the confines of the State of Israel), and they reject notions of compensation, a partial return of refugees, or the right to return only to a Palestinian state.
4. Allowing Israel to keep control of major settlement blocs inside the West
Bank in exchange for equal Israeli land
Strongly support 3.8 Somewhat support 13.6
Somewhat oppose 25.0 Strongly oppose 56.9
No answer 0.7
5. Keeping Israel's authority in the area of Al- Aqsa Mosque
Strongly support 1.8 Somewhat support 3.9
Somewhat oppose 15.4 Strongly oppose 78.1
No answer 0.8
The conclusion is that the problem lies not with the Palestinian politicians, but with the general public. In other words, you can pressure Abu Mazen and his associates, and persuade them to make concessions and compromise, but it won't advance a thing. What you have to do is persuade the people, and that can only be done through the economy.
Osaily [mayor of Hebron] practically begs that more transit permits be granted for laborers to work in Israel. He says that if this is not done, Hebron will become a second Gaza. In other words, so long as Israel keeps raising the separation wall and the Palestinians keep getting poorer - all the debates about principles for a peace agreement are pretty worthless.
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