Majority of Egyptians want to void Israel peace pact, poll finds


JERUSALEM (JTA) — More than half of Egyptians say the peace treaty with Israel should be annulled, a new poll has found.

Some 54 percent are prepared to overturn the treaty, with 36 percent saying the treaty should be maintained. Some 10 percent said they did not know, according to a nationwide survey from the Pew Research Center’s Global Attitudes Project.

Some 20 percent of Egyptians have a favorable opinion of the United States, basically unchanged from the 17 percent who rated the U.S. favorably in 2010.

Asked their opinion about the U.S. response to the political situation in Egypt, 39 percent said the U.S. has had a negative impact and 22 percent said it has had a positive effect. Some 35 percent said the United States has neither positively nor negatively influenced the situation in their country.

Fifteen percent of Egyptians surveyed wanted closer ties with the U.S., while 43 percent preferred a more distant relationship. Forty percent would like the relationship between the two countries to be the same as it has been in recent years.

Some 71 percent of Egyptians said a democracy was preferable to any other type of government, up from 60 percent last year. In addition, 64 percent said they favored a democratic form of government over a strong leader.

Meanwhile, 62 percent of Egyptians surveyed think laws should strictly follow the teachings of the Koran.

The survey, conducted March 24 to April 7 in face-to-face interviews conducted in Arabic among 1,000 Egyptians, was part of the larger Spring 2011 Pew Global Attitudes survey conducted in 22 countries and the Palestinian Authority under the direction of Princeton Survey Research Associates International. The margin of error is plus or minus 4 percent.

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