CBNNews.com - Gaza-based Hamas chief Ismail Haniyeh came out a percentage point ahead of Fatah-affiliated Palestinian Authority (PA) President Mahmoud Abbas in a recent opinion poll.
According to the Palestinian Center for Policy and Survey Research poll, published Monday, if elections were held today, Haniyeh would beat Abbas.
Jerusalem Post Palestinian Affairs correspondent Khaled Abu Toameh said the latest poll reflects a "significant increase" in Hamas' popularity since this past December.
Toameh said the Palestinian public credits Haniyeh's government with "greater public legitimacy," both in the Gaza Strip and in the Fatah-ruled West Bank.
Only 41 percent of those polled were happy with Abbas's performance, while 56 percent were not.
Forty-two percent of respondents said they're not satisfied with PA Prime Minister Salam Fayyad's "government."
Abbas appointed Fayyad to replace Haniyeh as prime minister after Hamas' bloody military coup in Gaza 10 months ago.
The poll also revealed that Fatah leader Marwan Barghouti, serving five consecutive life sentences for murder, would defeat Haniyeh by a wide margin - 57 to 38 percent.
The poll has a 3 percent margin of error.
Source: The Jerusalem Post