UK support for Israel 'declining'

Pro-Israel sentiment in the UK has dropped from 25 per cent to 17 per cent in a decade, while support for the Palestinians remained at the same level at 18 per cent.

Comparison of polls taken between 2001 and 2011 taken by Bicom showed that most people did not take sides and there was “a general public coolness” towards both Israel and the Palestinians, according to evidence presented in the Knesset.

Sympathy was at its highest for the Palestinians at 40 per cent in November 2006 (when it was 33 per cent for the Israelis) and for Israel at 36 per cent the following year (when it was the same figure for the Palestinians).

One in five blamed Israel for the failure to settle the conflict, compared with only eight per cent blaming the Palestinians in the most recent poll. Two thirds held both sides responsible and five per cent neither.

Sixty-four per cent supported Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state (although 46 per cent made it conditional on a peace agreement); eight per cent rejected the idea of a Jewish state.

Last updated: 1:20pm, May 24 2012