With a Total Absence of trust in the Intentions of Israel, the Netanyahu Government, and the Jerusalem Municipality Coupled with a Firm Belief in the Existence of Discrimination against Arabs, a Solid Majority Prefers Palestinian or International Sovereignty Over East Jerusalem. Yet, with High Levels of Satisfaction with Israeli Basic Services, and Significant Worry about Losing Israeli Medical Services, Free Movement Inside Israel, and Loss of Freedom of Expression in the Permanent Settlement, three Quarters of East Jerusalemites Prefer to See East and West Jerusalem as an Open City and One Quarter Prefers to Hold Israeli Citizenship


16-30 July 2010     

These are the results of the latest poll conducted by the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research (PSR) in the areas of occupied East Jerusalem annexed by Israeli to the Jerusalem municipality and where Israeli laws are applied and Israeli (blue) identity cards are held by Palestinian residents. The poll was conducted during the period of 16-30 July.[1] Interviews were conducted face to face with a random sample of 1000 adult Palestinians over the age of 18 in 50 residential locations throughout all occupied East Jerusalem Arab neighborhoods. Margin of error is 3%. For further details on the neighborhoods and locations where the poll was conducted and for details on the demographic characteristics of the respondents, see annex (1): Sample Characteristics.

The poll has two goals: 

(1) To identify current problems and concerns of East Jerusalem Palestinians under existing political and living conditions and to identify their views and likely patterns of behavior in a future political settlement. For this purpose, respondents have been asked about satisfaction with levels of service delivery, the nature of problems they confront in daily life, views on various peace proposals, and probable behavior under various peace scenarios.

(2) To contribute to the preparation of policy papers on the issues and challenges that are likely to confront East Jerusalemites and Palestinian policy makers in the aftermath of a political settlement. These policy papers seek to serve Palestinian planning purposes in terms of identifying the scope and nature of expectations and concerns and determining the preferences of East Jerusalemites in order to propose ways and options for dealing with them.

The poll was conducted during a period of intense Palestinian-Israeli-American debate on the transition from proximity talks to direct peace talks and on the future of a settlement freeze announced by Israel several months before. The period also witnessed continued threats to demolish homes of Palestinians in the city and to force the evacuation of homes claimed to have been owned by Jews before 1948. In response to these threats, demonstrations were organized by Palestinians and by Israeli and international solidarity groups in areas such as Shaykh Jarrah and Silwan.     

For further details, contact PSR director, Dr. Khalil Shikaki, or Walid Ladadweh at tel 02-296 4933 or email pcpsr@pcpsr.org.


Main Findings:

Findings show that the thing most liked by East Jerusalemites about their city is al Aqsa Mosque (mentioned by 50% of respondents) and the thing most disliked is the occupation and related measures like settlements, wall, siege, and other restrictions (54%) followed by issues of daily life like high prices, crowdedness, or “moral corruption” (each selected by 4% of the residents).  The following summary covers six main issues: (1) satisfaction with municipal services, (2) Wall and checkpoints, (3) political participation, (4) permanent settlement, (5) goals of Israel, Netanyahu government, and Jerusalem Municipality, and (7) demolishment and evacuation of homes.


(1) Services

While an overwhelming majority of the residents of East Jerusalem believes that discrimination in service delivery exists between Arabs and Jews, the majority is satisfied with basic and health services; yet, when problems arise, less than one third of respondents seek help from Israeli governmental offices while the largest percentage says it seeks help from family.


  • Residents of East Jerusalem are satisfied with many aspects of their life in the city but they are dissatisfied with others. (see figure 1) For example, they are satisfied or very satisfied with service delivery in areas of electricity (85%), water (79%), sewage system (78%), and telephone services (77%). They are also satisfied with access to medical services (83%), quality of doctors (77%), and access to nearby places of worship.  By contrast, they are dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with service delivery in areas of residence taxes/Arnona (69%), ability to obtain building permits (63%), conditions of roads (61%), access to West Bank (59%) level of law enforcement (54%), and income tax (53%). When asked about the overall living conditions, three almost equal groups emerge: 35% are satisfied, 33% are dissatisfied, and 32% are neither satisfied nor dissatisfied....More