In a new survey released by the Pew Research Center, support for terrorism and terrorist groups remains high amongst Palestinians, despite overall drops in support of terrorist groups across the Muslim world.
“Widespread Muslim concern about Islamic extremism is generally coupled with rejection of suicide bombing and other forms of violence in the name of Islam. However, in some countries, substantial minorities of Muslims say attacks on civilians are at least sometimes justified to defend Islam from its enemies; in the Palestinian territories, a majority of Muslims hold this view,” the survey said.
The survey highlights the deep level of support for suicide bombing in the Palestinian territories.
“Support for suicide bombing and other violence aimed at civilian targets is most widespread in the Palestinian territories, with 62% of Muslims saying that such attacks are often or sometimes justified in order to defend Islam from its enemies. Support is strong both in Hamas-ruled Gaza (64%) and the Fatah-governed West Bank (60%),” according to the survey.
Amongst support for several Islamic terrorist groups surveyed across the Muslim world, Palestinians also rank the highest in support for Al-Qaeda (35 percent favorable), the Taliban (29 percent favorable), and Hamas (48 percent favorable), and gave the second-most favorable rating for Hezbollah (43 percent).
But overall favorable views of terrorist groups has declined across the Muslim world, according to the Pew survey, and in no country polled do any of the terror groups receive majority support.
The Pew survey included face-to-face interviews with nearly 9,000 Muslims in 11 Muslim countries during this March and April.