Parliamentary candidates’ perceptions of Israel and Palestine—dods.pdf

New poll finds that a majority of parliamentary candidates support UK recognition of the State of Palestine in 2015
Parliamentary candidates standing in next week’s UK General Election have signalled their support for the recognition of the state of Palestine in 2015, according a new poll conducted by Dods<…/>.

The survey, commissioned by Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) and published today, found that 89% of responding candidates either ‘strongly agree’ or ‘tend to agree’ with the statement “statehood for Palestine (on 1967 lines) is a right which should be recognised in 2015”.

Ahead of the election on 7th May, the manifestos of the Conservative, Labour, Liberal Democrats, UK Independence Party (UKIP), and Green Parties have all indicated support for a negotiated two-state solution for Israel-Palestine. The Scottish National Party additionally underlined their support for the formal recognition of the independent state of Palestine.

The polling comes in the wake of the vote in Parliament in October last year, when MPs voted emphatically to urge the government to “recognise the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel” as part of a “contribution to securing a negotiated two-state solution”. During that vote, 274 MPs supported Palestinian statehood, against an opposition of just 12.

Reacting to the survey, Sir Vincent Fean, former UK Consul-General in Jerusalem and current trustee of Medical Aid for Palestinians said: “This is the considered view of Parliaments across Europe, from here to Paris, to Dublin, Strasbourg, and, I hope soon, Oslo agreeing with Stockholm. UK recognition of Palestine in 2015 serves notice to the world that for us the solution of two states is a fact – not merely an aim.”

Liberal Democrat peer and former Party Leader Lord David Steel said: “This is excellent cross-party support from parliamentary candidates, following the debates in both the House of Commons and the House of Lords. Let us hope that whatever government is formed next month will implement long overdue justice for the Palestinians”.

Chris Doyle, Director of the Council for Arab-British Understanding (Caabu) said: “This survey highlights why party leaders, media and diplomats must take this issue more seriously as there is major grassroots support for recognition in Britain. It is clear that the British people fundamentally understand that it is only fair and right that Palestinian should be recognised and not in 2020, but now in 2015.”