Sixty-eight per cent of Palestinians say they have good relations with EU, poll finds
Almost seven out of ten Palestinians feel their country has good relations with the European Union, and 63% say EU support contributes a lot to the development in the country. 75% of those who knew that the EU provided financial support to Palestine say that it is effective. These are just some of the findings of the latest annual opinion poll in Palestine, published by the EU Neighbours South project.
The survey – part of a wave of opinion polls carried out in eight southern Mediterranean partner countries – was conducted in the Palestinian territories from June to July 2020, with 1,017 people consulted in face-to-face interviews. Respondents were asked about their general perceptions of the EU and the values with which it is associated, about EU relations with their country, and the impact of EU financial support, including in supporting their country’s response to the COVID-19 crisis. The surveys also look at preferred sources of information, how people feel about their personal situation and the situation in their country, and their expectations for the future.
Asked to describe relations with the EU, 68% said they were good, compared to an average of 67% in the Mashrek (59% in the Maghreb). 56% of those asked felt the EU had a positive influence on the development of their country.
Most Palestinians (64%) also felt the EU was an important partner, and 64% said the EU and Palestinians shared sufficient common values to cooperate. 63% per cent of Palestinians felt the European Union brought peace and stability in the region (compared to just 25% of Israelis who felt the same).
In more general terms, 54% of Palestinians had a positive image of the EU, compared to the Mashrek average of 47% (Maghreb 45%), while 29% had a neutral image and just 15% a negative image. The values most frequently associated with the EU were human rights as well as equality between women and men; the values least associated with the EU were absence of corruption and religious freedom.
Palestinians feel EU support has contributed the most in the areas of education (33%) and health (26%) and are keen for the EU to play an even greater role in human rights and health. When asked about the support provided by the EU to their country during the Coronavirus pandemic, citizens in Palestine answered that it had been effective (66%).
In general, Palestinians think that the European Union’s image in their national media is positive. On television, 56% of them believe that the image is very to fairly positive, while eleven per cent believe it to be very to fairly negative. Television is followed by websites (52% positive, 29% neutral, 14% negative) and radio (47% positive, 34% neutral, 15% negative).
Palestinians are generally not satisfied with their lives (36%, against 52% last year, compared to an average of 61% for the Mashrek, and 60% for the Maghreb). 36% think that the financial situation of their household is good against 63% who think it is bad. Moreover, 66% think the current economic situation of the country is bad.
The EU Neighbours South regional overview report and factsheets are available here.
To find out more about EU - Palestine cooperation and partnership, go here.