Settlers willing relocate
|Fwd: Poll: Israel Settlers Would Relocate (fwd)|
>Poll: Israel Settlers Would Relocate
>Wed Jul 24, 9:23 AM ET
>JERUSALEM (AP) - A survey by an Israeli group opposed to settlements claims a
>majority of Jewish settlers in the West Bank and Gaza Strip ( news - web
>sites) would abandon their homes if the government or parliament decided to
>relocate them to Israel and compensate them.
>The Peace Now survey of 3,200 households in 127 settlements, which was
>released Wednesday, said 68 percent of settlers would comply with orders to
>leave their communities, with only two percent saying they might resist
>Fifty-nine percent said they considered financial compensation the best
>solution to the issue.
>The Palestinians bitterly oppose Israeli settlements in the West Bank and
>Gaza, while the United States and the international community say settlements
>are an obstacle to peace. Peace Now is a fierce opponent of settlements.
>A peacemaking formula drafted last year by a commission headed by former
>Senate Democratic leader George Mitchell included a clause stipulating a
>settlement freeze. Prime Minister Ariel Sharon ( news - web sites), however,
>draws significant political support from Israel's religious right, which backs
>the settlement movement.
>The Council of Jewish Settlements, the umbrella settlers' organization, said
>the Peace Now survey was false.
>But it offered no data of its own on settler attitudes, citing only census
>figures showing a growth in the settler population of 7.7 percent since the
>September 2000 outbreak of the Palestinian uprising, to a current total of
>Peace Now says its research shows that only a small minority make their homes
>in settlements for ideological reasons, with most settlers lured instead by
>cheap housing, tax breaks and rural surroundings that settlements offer.
>"The vast majority (77 percent) of settlers chose to live in a settlement for
>reasons of quality of life," said the survey, conducted between April and
>The poll had a margin of error of plus or minus three percentage points.