Surprise poll of UK Arabs shows more than 50% will snub Labour, Tories over Israel-Gaza stance

Surprise poll of UK Arabs shows more than 50% will snub Labour, Tories over Israel-Gaza stance
A new poll of UK Arabs has shown wide disillusionment with the Labour and the Tories over their biased stances towards Israel as it wages war on Gaza.
3 min read
01 July, 2024
UK Arabs perceive Labour and the Tories to be biased in favour of Israel as it continues to wage a brutal war on Gaza [Getty]

A recent poll of the voting intentions of Arabs in the UK shows that well over 50% will snub Labour and the Conservative Party in the upcoming general election on 4 July due to their stances on Israel’s war on Gaza.

The survey, titled “Arab Opinions in Britain Regarding the General Election”, conducted by the Arab Voice Campaign in late June, included 539 UK citizens of Arab origin.

The results show that an astonishing 38% of those surveyed expressed their intention to vote for the Workers Party of Britain, led by the notorious Rochdale MP George Galloway, who has put support for Gaza front and centre of his election campaign.

Around 15% expressed support for independent candidates running on a pro-Gaza platform, while just 12% said they would vote for the centrist Labour Party led by Keir Starmer.

Meanwhile, 5.5% intend to vote for the Liberal Democrats, with the Green Party of England and Wales receiving support from 9% of participants. The Conservatives and Reform UK, the party led by hard-right populist Nigel Farage, collectively received only 3% support.

20% of participants remain undecided about who they will vote for.

The survey also showed an increase in the participation of British Arabs in the UK political system, with 30% of those polled casting a vote for the first time, with Gaza likely being a major motivation.

To analyse the survey results, the Arab Voice Campaign organized a public seminar in London on June 29. Several researchers participated, discussing the influence and role of Arabs in the UK election and the wider political sphere.

The seminar was presented by Al Jazeera journalist Mahmoud Mourad and included a speech by economic researcher Dr. Mohamed Haidar, who discussed techniques to achieve better polling outcomes.

The poll will be welcome news for the campaign of George Galloway and his Workers Party, with the firebrand left-wing MP taking aim at the Labour Party and decrying its alleged pro-Israel stances.

Starmer’s Labour Party has witnessed a growing divide between itself and its Muslim base over Gaza, though opposition to Labour’s initially pro-Israel positions is by no means confined to Muslims or Arabs.

In recent local elections, despite winning by a wide margin, Labour lost some key wards and council seats to independents running on a pro-Gaza platform.

And while the UK’s first-past-the-post electoral system makes it very hard for independents and smaller parties to gain votes, Labour’s stance on Gaza, both during and after the election, will continue to come under scrutiny by many voters, but particularly Arabs and Muslims.

In a controversial interview with LBC radio in October, Starmer said that Israel had the right to cut off power and water supplies into Gaza.

 “I’m very clear, Israel must have that right to defend herself,” Starmer said.

When the presenter challenged him on whether that included cutting off power or water, the former lawyer said that he thought Israel did have the right to do that “within international law”.

However, since then he has called for a ceasefire and more humanitarian aid into Gaza, as well as the release of Israeli captives held in the enclave.