Dissatisfaction with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is rising in the West Bank and Gaza, but so is support for the Hamas terrorist organization.

These are results of a new poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip between Sept. 9-12.

Key findings:

  • 62 percent of the public want president Abbas to resign while 31 percent want him to remain in office.
  • Three months ago, 58 percent said they want Abbas to resign.
  • Demand for Abbas’ resignation stands at 54 percent in the West Bank and 74 percent in the Gaza Strip.
  • Level of satisfaction with the performance of president Abbas stands at 31 percent and dissatisfaction at 63 percent.
  • Level of satisfaction with Abbas stands at 36 percent in the West Bank and 24 percent in the Gaza Strip.
  • Three months ago, satisfaction with Abbas stood at 36 percent (44 percent in the West Bank and 24 percent in the Gaza Strip)

Abbas, who is 84, was elected president on Jan. 15, 2005. No new elections have been held by the Palestinian Authority since then.

That means Abbas is currently serving the fifteenth year of his four-year term.

The problem is that if new elections were held in the West Bank now, Hamas – the terror organization affiliated with the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood, and which already controls the Gaza Strip – would win decisively.

This is the main reason Abbas has refused to hold new elections.

The survey found that “if new presidential elections were held today and only two were nominated, Mahmoud Abbas and [Hamas leader] Ismail Haniyeh, the former would receive 39 percent and the latter 52 percent of the vote.”

This represents a decline in support for Abbas of 3 points from three months ago, and an increase for Haniyeh of 3 points.

In the Gaza Strip, 32 percent of voters would support Abbas the poll found (the same as three months ago), while 62 percent say they would support Haniyeh (a 1-point drop).

On the West Bank, Abbas’ support has dropped from 51 percent to 46 percent today, while support for Haniyeh has climbed from 38 percent to 42 percent.

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