Wed 17 Apr 2024 8:05 pm - Jerusalem Time

Opinion poll: how 5 European countries perceive Palestinian issues

Half of French people of voting age support a ban on the arms trade with Israel (51%), one in three French people (34%) think it is true to say that Israel is carrying out genocide against the Palestinian people ( much more than those who oppose it) according to a new poll carried out by Yougov and commissioned by the Palestinian Institute for Public Diplomacy. 

The poll, carried out in five European countries (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy and Sweden), among from a representative sample of the entire population, also shows that young people (18-24 years old) are all the more aware of the violation of Palestinian rights (55% believe that it is true to say that Israel is committing genocide, and of those aware of the Apartheid allegation, 70% think it is accurate). 

A generational difference which is clearly emerging, with the famous "generation Z" which could mark an important turning point in the future. The survey also reveals that a very small minority (8%) believes that the government has adopted the right position in regarding the current situation in Gaza, and that a significant proportion (37%) think it is probably appropriate to characterize Israel's policies and actions as "colonialism." Overall, more than half of French people say they lack knowledge and opinions on the issue (53% say they are little or not at all aware of issues concerning Palestinians and their rights). While qualifying Israel's policy as establishing a "apartheid" against the Palestinians is not a well-known fact as the data shows (more than 69% say they have never heard this statement or do not know), among French adults who have an opinion on the question, half view Israeli policies as colonialism (58%) and apartheid (47%). 

The poll also reveals that among those who express an opinion, the majority (30%) perceive the media as biased pro-Israel rather than impartial, while censorship by social media is also a well-recognized trend (45% believe social media restricts Palestinian content or content critical of Israel). 

These findings support quantitative studies of media bias in France, the United States and the United Kingdom, as well as reports of considerable censorship by the platforms. “Tens of thousands of people continue to take to the streets and mobilize to denounce the genocide in Gaza and the complicity of the government which chose to continue its cooperation and relations with the Israeli regime while criminalizing and repressing solidarity with Palestine. 

The poll and the data do not lie: the government's policy is clearly not in line with public opinion," declared Inès Abdel Razek, Director of the Palestinian Institute for Public Diplomacy. The substantial support of the adult population ban on the arms trade with Israel is concomitant with the legal action taken by several French NGOs to suspend arms deliveries to Israel, revealed on April 11. Young people (18-24 years old) also understand better than others the intersection of social justice issues, with a large proportion of young people believing that Palestine and Palestinian rights are issues related to the fight against racism (62%), freedom (74%) and the fight for equality (63%), giving great potential for broader alliances and mobilization around shared values. Overall, there is still much to do to make people better off. informed and educated on Palestinian issues, which our movement will continue to strive for.

About the investigation

This survey was carried out through online interviews with members of the YouGov Plc Global-Panels panel, made up of more than 2.4 million people in 55 countries who agreed to participate in surveys. Participants were randomly selected from the panel and invited by email to participate, with a link to the survey, in accordance with the sample definition (the sample definition could be "French adult population" or a subset such as "French adult women"). YouGov Plc typically achieves response rates between 35% and 50%, which vary depending on the topic, questionnaire complexity and length. The total sample was composed of 1,283 adults and was weighted to be representative of all adults in France (aged over 18). The sample was weighted to match the profile of the sample definition, typically derived from census or industry-accepted data. The survey was conducted online March 11-18, 2024. All figures, unless otherwise noted, are from YouGov Plc. 

About PIPD

The Palestine Institute for Public Diplomacy (PIPD) is an independent non-governmental organization dedicated to the citizen diplomacy of the Palestinian people for liberation, and strives to strengthen the Palestinian movement to confront the injustices suffered, as well as the systems, structures, and geopolitical arrangements that perpetuate them.

In our advocacy and campaigning work, we favor a deeply collaborative approach, engaging with other Palestinian voices, organized groups in Palestine and the diaspora, as well as with political and social movements around the world. We are strengthening our advocacy strategy by engaging directly with international policymakers, opinion leaders and the media, where Palestinians can build and amplify their influence on political and geopolitical transformations. As a credible actor, we maintain contacts with diplomats, parliamentarians, journalists, academics and others around the world. 

The PIPD team and board, based in Palestine and abroad, strive to adopt and promote an institutional model based on values of inclusion, equity, interdependence and solidarity.


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Opinion poll: how 5 European countries perceive Palestinian issues