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Welcome to Palestine Today a service of the International Middle East Media Centre, for Tuesday, July 06, 2010.

Settlements are said to control 42% of the West Bank and Israeli soldiers attack Palestinians being held in Israeli prisons these stories and more coming up, stay tuned.

A new report from Israeli human rights group B’Tselem, details the ways in which the settler land theft attempts to legitimize its criminal enterprise, and in other cases flaunts its illegality.

The primary means of acquiring land, according to the report, was through the state of Israel’s own declaration that certain areas were ‘state land.’ The majority of these claims were made between 1979 and 1992 at the expense of 16% of the West Bank. These declarations were justified with law dating from the Ottoman period which contradicts with rulings by the Mandatory Supreme Court.

Other lands were outright stolen by settlements in their expansion over the years and 21% of the lands they have built on are recognized by the state of Israel as belonging to Palestinians.

Population expansion in the illegal settlements is accelerated by subsidies, grants, and tax breaks from the Israeli government. Through the network of settler roads, the settlement areas themselves and areas set aside for so-called security reasons by the Israeli Civil Administration, the settlers control about 42% of the West Bank.

Palestinian prisoners at Megiddo prison say that they were violently assaulted at midnight July 5 as soldiers looked for a suspected mobile phone.

The soldiers attacked with clubs and tear gas before corralling the prisoners out of their cells. Many suffered injuries from tear gas inhalation, to concussions and bruises.

The attacks in recent weeks have escalated with many of the attacks occurring after midnight and involve barring visitations, placing some detainees in solitary confinement, and preventing the detainees from receiving education.

Military dogs were used in the searches of cells, while one wounded inmate was shackled and thrown into solitary confinement.

Hamas is reporting that on Tuesday security forces in the West Bank allied to Fatah arrested eight members near Nablus.

The arrested individuals are from Beit Forik and Aseera el-Shimaliyya villages close to Nablus. They were arrested in their homes. No cause was cited for their arrest.

Hamas also slammed Palestinian Prime Minister Fayyad’s meeting with Israel’s Defense Minister yesterday depicting it as an effort to “beautify the image of the occupation.”

The group went on, ‘This meeting does not represent the Palestinian people, it is a provocative act that undermines the suffering of the people living under occupation and oppression led by Israel’s war minister, Ehud Barak”.

The meeting was to discuss expanding the control of Palestinian security forces outside of A areas into B and C areas which are controlled by the Israeli military.

Thank you for joining us from occupied Bethlehem, you have been listening to Palestine Today from the International Middle East Media Center, for constant update, please visit our website at This report has been brought to you by Brian Ennis.