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'US to blame for Palestine poverty' say polls

The most recent economical survey prepared by Dr. Nabil Kukali revealed that 78.6 percent of Palestinians are worried about their personal security. 80.9% of Palestinians are worried about the level of subsistence of their families at present.

78.1% evaluated their economic condition as bad. 62.3% are pessimistic about the improvement of the economic and political conditions. 62.1% hold the United States, Israel and other donor countries responsible for the deterioration of the economic conditions in the Palestinian territories.

The poll, which was conducted by the Palestinian Center for Public Opinion (PCPO) during the period from October 26th to November 1st, 2006, and took a random sample of 1,000 respondents representing the various demographic specimens of the population in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and Gaza Strip over 18 years of age. The most significant finding of the poll Dr. Kukali, the Director of PCPO, said, is that pessimism is rising among Palestinians about the possibility of improving the economic and political conditions.

Dr. Kukali further pointed out that the indications of this survey should be taken very seriously because they abundantly show the dreadful extent of the recession that the economic and living conditions have experienced compared with the outcome of a poll conducted last year.

This is a clear evidence, Dr. Kukali said, that the Palestiniand str suffering from an increasingly suffocating economical crisis due to the dominance of several problems caused by high rates of unemployment, rise in prices and the non-payment of the salaries of around 160.000 employees of the public sector for about nine months so far. This hardship is substantially aggravated by the halt, or at least the drastic reduction of the financial assistance provided by the donor countries.

In addition is the refusal of Israel to transfer the tax and customs revenue due to the Palestinians. Dr. Kukali remarked that these results should demonstrate to the donor countries, chiefly the United States, and also Israel, that they should reconsider their decision and not further escalate the hardships of the Palestinian people.

The full results of the poll can be read at http://www.pcpo.ps/polls.htm

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