Wednesday, Islamic Resistance Movement, Hamas, won the biggest number of seats in the Student Council elections in Bir Zeit University, near the West Bank city of Ramallah.

The Public Relations Office at the university reported that Hamas candidates won 23 seats of the 51 seats making up the student assembly; Bir Zeit University has a student population of more than 7000 students.

Meanwhile, Fateh movement, the traditional rival of Hamas, won 18 seats while the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) won only five seats.

The Islamic Jihad and an independent list won two seats each, the remaining seat was won by the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine.

According to Palestinian political analysts, Hamas and in spite of the financial and economic crisis has maintained popularity among the Palestinians.

Since Hamas’ victory in the Legislative elections in January, the United States and Israel have launched a campaign to Isolate the Hamas-led government and cut of aid money; the campaign was intensified after Hamas officially formed its government three weeks ago.

Some Palestinian commentators said that they believe that the Israeli-American pressure on the Palestinians is actually backfiring, and that many Palestinians instead of turning against Hamas are showing increasing support for the movement.