Australians support a state of Palestine
March 2017 Poll
Morgan Poll: Government Out of Touch on Israel/Palestine, APAN, 31 March 2017
A Roy Morgan Poll released this week revealed that the Australian public is much more sympathetic toward the Palestinians than the Turnbull government.
An overwhelming majority of survey participants expressed support for the recognition of Palestinian statehood: 73% (up from 62% in 2011), while a majority (55%) indicated that they regarded the Palestinians’ call for “a boycott of Israeli goods, services, companies and institutions profiting from the occupation of Palestine” as reasonable. Only 8% opposed recognition of Palestinian statehood, while 25% described the call for a boycott as unreasonable.
61% of those surveyed opposed the construction of Israeli settlements in the Occupied Territories and 53% said that they opposed the Turnbull government’s rejection of UN Security Council Resolution 2334, which reaffirmed the UN’s opposition to settlements and called upon Israel to halt settlement activities in the Occupied Territories. Only 17% of those surveyed indicated support for Israeli settlements, while 29% supported the government’s rejection of UNSC Resolution 2334.
Despite extensive media coverage of the Israel-Palestine conflict, only 44% of poll participants indicated that they knew either “a lot” or “a fair amount” about the issue.
“Australians might not feel particularly well-informed about the conflict but they’re not stupid,” noted Bishop George Browning, the President of the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network. “They understand that colonising someone else’s country is always wrong. They support the United Nations in its opposition to Israeli settlements. They also understand that recognising Palestinian statehood and boycotting institutions that profit from the Occupation are both reasonable and non-violent means of promoting a peaceful solution to the conflict.”
Apart from Israel, Australia was the only country to reject UNSC Resolution 2334, which was passed unanimously by the UN Security Council on 23 December 2016 (with the United States abstaining). The Turnbull government opposes recognising Palestinian statehood. The Greens support recognition. Labor has indicated that it might recognise Palestine if there is no progress in the peace process. Although individual parliamentarians have expressed support for a boycott of Israeli institutions profiting from the Occupation, no Australian political party supports a boycott.
“The poll indicates that the Australian public is way out in front of the major parties on the issue of Palestine,” noted Browning. “In this regard, politicians need to listen more to their constituents and less to Australia’s Israel lobby in formulating policy.”
34% of those surveyed expressed greater sympathy for the Palestinians, while 26% indicated greater sympathy for Israelis. Only those aged 65 years and older were more sympathetic towards Israelis (37%) than Palestinians (32%). Sympathy for the Palestinians was particularly strong among those with a tertiary education, standing at 41%, as opposed to 23% who indicated a greater sympathy for Israelis.
The poll was commissioned by the following Palestine advocacy organisations:
- The Australia Palestine Advocacy Network
- The Australian Friends of Palestine Association
- Australians for Palestine
- The Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine
- Friends of Bethlehem.
View poll results here >
November 2014 Poll
Morgan Poll: Australians Support Palestine
In a Roy Morgan poll of Australians’ attitudes to the Israel/Palestine conflict, 57 percent said Australia should vote “yes” to Palestine’s recognition as an independent Member State of the United Nations.
The poll was conducted last week on behalf of the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN). The Chair of APAN, Bishop George Browning said:
“This is an overwhelming endorsement of Palestine’s push to become an independent state living in peace beside Israel. Its message should be taken on board by the Abbott Government at the UN.”
Only 27 percent of Australians thought the government should vote “no” to Palestinian statehood. This has special relevance as Australia currently holds the Presidency of the United Nations Security Council for the month of November.
30 percent of respondents thought the Abbott government favours the Israelis whereas only three percent thought it favoured the Palestinians. The results show that the government is out of step with public opinion.
When asked what they thought about Israel’s recent military attack on Gaza – causing (according to the UN) 1,486 civilian deaths – 43 percent of Australians said it was “not justified” and only 27 percent thought it was “justified”.
“In previous surveys, Australians have also overwhelmingly condemned the continual settlement building by the Israel government on Palestinian land that diminishes the possibility of a two-state solution” said Bishop Browning.
“It is clear Australians do not support Israeli actions against the Palestinians and a majority want the federal government to represent their views to the Netanyahu government and the world at the United Nations.”
ISPAL Q1. Next about the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. How much would you say you know about the situation? A lot or fair amount or not very much?
1 A lot 82 13.3% (up 5 points on 2011 poll) 613
2 Fair amount 259 41.1% (up 4 points)
3 Not very much 256 42.9% (down 10 points)
4 Nothing 16 2.6% (down one point)
ISPAL Q2. Overall, do your sympathies lie more with the #/Israelis or the Palestinians?/Palestinians or the Israelis?/
1 Israelis 128 20.9% (down 5 points) 613
2 Palestinians 164 26.8% (down 1 point)
3 Neither 184 29.4% (up 8 points)
4 Can’t say 137 24.1% (down 1 point)
ASK ISPAL Q3A IF CODE 1 ON ISPALQ2
ISPAL Q3A. Would you describe your sympathies as: #/Very strongly held, strongly held, moderately held or lightly held/lightly held, moderately held, strongly held or Very strongly held/?
1 Very strongly held 16 13% 128
2 Strongly held 28 22%
3 Moderately held or 57 45%
4 Lightly held 27 21%
ASK ISPAL Q3B IF CODE 2 ON ISPALQ2
ISPALQ3B. Would you describe your sympathies as: #/Very strongly held, strongly held, moderately held or lightly held/lightly held, moderately held, strongly held or Very strongly held/?
1 Very strongly held 20 12% 164
2 Strongly held 41 25%
3 Moderately held or 78 48%
4 Lightly held 25 15%
AGAIN ASK EVERYONE:
ISPAL Q4. You may be aware that in July this year, fighting again intensified between Israel and Hamas in the Gaza Strip. Some people have said that Israel’s recent military action in the Gaza Strip was #/justified, others have said it was not justified/not justified, others have said it was justified./ In your opinion, was Israel’s recent military action in the Gaza strip #/justified or was it not justified/not justified or was it justified/?
1 Justified 167 25.6% 613
2 Not justified 254 43.0%
3 Can’t say 192 31.4%
ISPAL Q5. Palestine will soon apply to the UN Security Council to become a State and declare its independence. In order for Palestine to be recognised as a full member state of the United Nations, existing member Nations must enter a vote of yes, no or they can abstain from voting. In your opinion, how should Australia vote to Palestine becoming an independent state?
1 Vote yes 344 57.1% (up 5 points) 613
2 Vote no 51 7.6% (down 7 points)
3 Abstain from voting 106 17.2% (down 3 points)
4 Can’t Say 112 18.1% (up 4 points)
ISPAL Q6. A movement called BDS wants to implement a campaign of boycotts, divestments and sanctions against Israeli goods and services until it complies with international law in relation to Palestine. How likely would you be to support a boycott of Israeli good and services?
1 Likely 190 31.0% 613
2 Not likely 293 47.3%
3 Don’t know 130 21.8%
ISPAL Q7. Now about the Abbott Liberal-National Government’s handling of the Israel-Palestine conflict. In your opinion, does the Abbott Liberal-National Government #/favour the Israelis, favour the Palestinians/favour the Palestinians, favour the Israelis/ or favour neither?
1 Favour Israelis 186 29.6% (up 4 points) 613
2 Favour Palestinians 19 2.8% (down 1 point)
3 Favour neither 211 33.2% (down 45points)
4 Can’t say 197 34.3% (up 2 points)
November 2011 Poll
In November 2011 the Coalition for Justice and Peace in Palestine (CJPP, Sydney) joined with the Australian Friends of Palestine Association (AFOPA, Adelaide), Australians for Palestine (AFP, Melbourne) and the Australia Palestine Advocacy Network (APAN) to commission a new Roy Morgan poll to research changes to those opinions expressed in 2009, plus attitudes to current events. The surprising results show that “three in five Australians believe the United Nations should now recognise Palestine as one of its member States.”
Roy Morgan Interviewing Services, Public Opinion Attitude Survey 2011, November 2011
[PDF file roymorgan_poll2011 ]
Q1. Next about the ongoing Israeli-Palestinian conflict. How much would you say
you know about the situation? A lot or fair amount or not very much?
1 A lot 8%
2 Fair amount 36%
3 Not very much 52%
4 Nothing 4%
Q2. Overall, do your sympathies lie more with the Israelis or the
Palestinians/Palestinians or the Israelis? (text rotated)
1 Israelis 26%
2 Palestinians 27%
3 Neither 21%
4 Can’t say 26%
Q3. Israeli settlers have been building homes on occupied Palestinian land for many
years. Would you say you support this activity?
1 Yes 17%
2 No 63%
3 Can’t say 20%
Q4. Is Palestine a full member state of the United Nations?
1 Yes 14%
2 No 44%
3 Can’t say 43%
In September 2011, Palestine applied for full membership of the United Nations. This
request is now being considered by the United Nations but Israel and the USA are
opposed to it.
Q5. In your opinion, should the United Nations recognise Palestine as one of its
1 Yes 61%
2 No 22%
3 Can’t say 18%
Q6. In order for Palestine to be recognised as a full member state of the United
Nations, existing member Nations must enter a vote of #/yes, no,/no, yes,/ or they can
abstain from voting. (text rotated)
In your opinion, how should Australia vote?
1 Vote Yes 51%
2 Vote No 15%
3 Abstain from voting 20%
4 Can’t say 14%
Q7. Now about the Gillard Labor Government’s handling of the Israel-Palestine
conflict. In your opinion, does the Gillard Labor Government favour the
#/Israelis,/Palestinians,/ favour the #/Palestinians,/Israelis,/ or favour neither? (text
1 Favour Israelis 25%
2 Favour Palestinians 5%
3 Favour neither 39%
4 Can’t say 32%
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