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30% in Egypt believe Tiran and Sanafir are Egyptian, 23% Saudi: Poll

According to the Baseera poll, 16 percent of Egyptians have not heard about the disputed islands

Ahram Online , Tuesday 26 Apr 2016
Tiran
A picture taken on January 14, 2014 through the window of an airplane shows the Red Sea's Tiran (foreground) and the Sanafir (background) islands in the Straits of Tiran between Egypt's Sinai Peninsula and Saudi Arabia (AFP)
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A survey carried out by Egypt’s Baseera polling centre revealed that 30 percent of Egyptians polled believe that the Red Sea islands of Tiran and Sanafir are rightfully Egyptian, whereas 23 percent believe they are Saudi.

The independent polling centre added in a Tuesday statement that 31 percent of Egyptians polled did not know whether the islands were Egyptian or Saudi, while 16 percent said they had not heard about the two disputed islands.

The Egyptian government announced two weeks ago that it was signing a deal with Saudi Arabia to redraw maritime borders to put the two islands within Saudi regional waters.

The announcement has caused uproar among many Egyptians, with several political opposition parties and movements as well as public figures denouncing the deal.

According to the results of the Baseera survey, 38 percent of participants under 30 years of age believe the islands are Egyptian, while 30 percent of those over 50 believe they are Saudi.

The poll, which was conducted by phone between 18 and 20 April, had a sample of 1,541 citizens over the age of 18 across all Egyptian governorates.

According to Baseera, the survey’s margin of error was less than 3 percent.

Over the past two weeks, the government has presented documents which it says prove the islands are indeed Saudi, which opponents have rejected.

The agreement is yet to be put before Egypt's House of Representatives. 

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