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Baseera Poll Shows What Egyptians Think About Disputed Red Sea Islands

Baseera Poll Shows What Egyptians Think About Disputed Red Sea Islands

Tiran Island
Tiran Island

According to a new opinion poll conducted by the Egyptian Center for Public Opinion Research (Baseera), 30 percent of Egyptians believe the two Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir belong to Egypt, while 23 percent think they are Saudi Arabian.

The poll, which was released on Tuesday, showed that 31 percent of the population could not determine whether the two islands were Egyptian or Saudi, whereas 16 percent had never heard of the issue.

During an official visit by the Saudi King Salman bin Abdel-Aziz to Egypt, the two countries signed an agreement declaring that the disputed islands belong to Saudi Arabia. The agreement has caused public uproar, with opposition politicians and public figures deploring the decision, while the Egyptian activist community has organized demonstrations on two separate occasions.

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The results of the survey suggest that age played a relatively large role when deciding whether the islands belong to Egypt or Saudi Arabia. 38 percent of those under 30 believe the islands are Egyptian and 17 percent consider them Saudi.

On the other hand, just 22 percent of respondents over the age of 50 think the islands are Egyptian whereas 30 percent see them as Saudi.

The poll was conducted between 18 and 20 April with a sample of 1541 individuals aged 18 years old and above across all of Egypt’s 27 governorates. The margin of error was less than 3 percent.

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