Daily Star staff
Tuesday, December 12, 2006
: A new survey conducted by the
for Research and Information shows that 73.1 percent of respondents support the creation of a national unity government. But the poll highlighted a considerable division between Lebanese confessions, in general, and Muslims in particular, as 94 percent of Shiites and 50 percent of Christians said the current government has lost its constitutional legitimacy, while 83 percent of Sunnis and 90 percent of Druze said the opposite.
The survey was conducted between November 30 and December 5, and was based on a sample of 800.
The center asked respondents their opinions on an international court to try former Premier Rafik Hariri's killers, the creation of a national unity Cabinet, the government's legitimacy, the country's deteriorating situation and the role of the Lebanese Army, among other issues pertaining to the current situation.
The center said there was an increase in popular support to the formation of a unity government, noting that an earlier survey published in Al-Akhbar newspaper in early October showed 70.1 percent of respondents responded positively to the opposition demand.
Asked who they thought was behind the assassination of Industry Minister Pierre Gemayel, more than 48 percent were undecided, while 21 percent said they believed the March 14 Forces were responsible.
According to the survey, 51.9 percent of respondents approved of the way the government dealt with the creation of an international tribunal, while 48.1 percent were opposed.
However, 56.2 percent of respondents said the opposition did not want to hamper the creation of the tribunal, arguing that it has repeatedly voiced support for the court.
Moreover, the majority of respondents believed the tribunal was not the main cause of disputes between the Cabinet majority and opposition.
The survey showed that 69.7 percent of respondents voiced concern over continuing security breaches. Druze and Sunni respondents expressed the highest levels of concern, which the center said highlighted tensions among these two sects.
Concerning foreign interference in Lebanese affairs, 31.7 percent said the government was being "manipulated" by foreign powers, while 29 percent said the opposition was controlled by foreign powers.
Significantly, 33.9 percent of respondents said both the government and the opposition were being manipulated by international forces.
Asked which country benefited most from
's escalating confessional tensions and political deadlock, 46.7 percent of respondents said
were the major beneficiaries, while 35.4 percent said
The survey highlighted the national level of trust in the army, with 90 percent of respondents expressing their support for the military.
The Daily Star