Mahmoud Abbas and Benjamin Netanyahu - AP - 05092011
Mahmoud Abbas and Benjamin Netanyahu last year. Photo by AP
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Vast differences exist between American and European perceptions of how to resolve the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, an annual foreign policy poll indicated on Wednesday, with most European Union citizens saying Israel should be pressured into a peace deal, and a vast majority of Americans saying they support pressuring the Palestinians.

According to the annual Transatlantic Trends poll, published by the German Marshall Fund of the United States and the Italian foundation Compagnia di San Paolo, 38% of EU respondents said Israel should be pushed toward a peace deal, with 55% of Americans favoring pressuring the Palestinians.

The annual poll also showed that only 15% of EU respondents felt the Palestinian Authority needed to be pressured into an agreement with Israel, with an impressive 28% opposing any kind of pressure on either side.

In addition, the poll also exposed Turkish public sentiment concerning what survey calls the "Arab-Israeli conflict," amid growing diplomatic tensions between Israel and Turkey over Jerusalem's refusal to apologize for its raid of 2010 Gaza-bound aid flotilla.

According to Transatlantic Trends' survey, a vast majority of Turks supported Israel being pressured into resolving the Mideast conflict, with 55%. However, the second highest respondent block was those saying they did not believe pressure should be exerted on both sides, representing 28% of Turks polled.

Only 7% of Turks, the lowest figure in the "Arab-Israeli conflict" section of the annual poll, said they felt the Palestinians must be pressured to resolve their grievances with Israel.

The annual Transatlantic Trends survey comes just two days after a new opinion poll published shows that a majority of people in Germany, France and Britain – three countries that are critical votes in the battle over the Palestinian bid for statehood – all want their leaders to vote in favor of a UN resolution to support recognition of a Palestinian state when it's discussed in New York.

The majority of citizens in Germany, France, and the U.K. support the planned Palestinian statehood bid in the United Nations, a new poll indicated on Monday.

The survey, which was carried out online by YouGov in Britain and Germany, and Ifop in France, on behalf of the global political web movement Avaaz - which is conducting an online petition in support of a Palestinian state - shows that in Germany 84% supported Palestinian statehood and 76% believed Germany should act now to recognize; in the U.K. the figures were 71% and 59%; and in France the figures were 82% and 69% respectively.