Bintel Blog

Poll: A Minaret Ban Would Make Little Headway with Israelis

By Nathan Jeffay

Israelis are more tolerant than the Swiss about mosque minarets.

At the end of November Switzerland voted in a referendum to ban mosque minarets. Here in Israel, a large part of the Jewish public feels antagonism towards the Arab minority, as indicated by various attempts in the last year to pass legislation aimed at it such as the Nakba law and the success of Yisrael Beiteinu in last year’s elections after proposing an “allegiance law” that would require all citizens to pledge allegiance to the state. Furthermore, a lot of Jews who live within earshot of the call-to-prayer complain that it is annoying.

But while in the Swiss referendum 57.5% of voters were for banning minarets and just 42.5% against, in a simulated referendum in Israel a firm majority was against. According to a new poll 43% of Israeli Jews would oppose such a ban while 28% would support one. The rest were undecided.

Intriguingly the strongest opposition came from the demographic that is often most antagonistic to the Arab minority — religious-Zionists.

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