A group of settlers from Bat Ayin attacked the village of Safa early Wednesday morning. The attackers began their assault around 5 am and hurled stones and empty bottles at Palestinian homes. They also made attempts to set farm lands on fire but were prevented by local farmers.
The settlers attacked the Palestinian homes after Israeli authorities demolished two illegal structures built by the settlers on Palestinian land.
When the Israeli military arrived on the scene they proceeded to fire tear gas at the Palestinians and their property instead of arresting the settlers.
This is yet another event in a long history of Bat Ayin settlers terrorizing the Palestinians surrounding their illegal settlement.
In Jerusalem, the proceedings against a Fatah official accused of violating a military order against visiting the al-Aqsa mosque have been postponed. They had originally been delayed when ultra-right protestors broke into the courtroom in May. The new hearing date is for 27 October of this year.
The official, Hatem Abdel Qader, was detained on his way to a protest against a march being held by right-wing Jewish organizers in April.
The Israeli military controls access to al-Aqsa and as such only a limited number of Muslims are allowed to pray at the mosque at any given time. Some are even issued prohibitive orders to stay away from the area, much like Hatem Abdel Qader.
Supporters of Qader gathered outside the courthouse to protest the trial and the military order. Many believe that the restrictions at al-Aqsa violate the right to freedom of religion.
From Doura, west of Hebron, we've learned of the Israeli military kidnapping twenty-one civilians. The military claimed it was looking for a Palestinian who carried out an attack on settlers last week.
The town of Zabbouba also saw the military storm their town, breaking into houses and handing out to residents ten orders commanding they report to a military base for questioning.
In related news, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu has called for immediate, direct talks with Palestinians on initiating a peace deal.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas dismissed the Israeli Prime Minister's call as it does not address any new issues and none of Netanyahu's positions have changed on contentious topics.
Thank you for joining us from occupied Bethlehem, you have been listening to Palestine Today from the International Middle East Center, for constant update, please visit our website at www.imemc.org. This report has been brought to you by Brian Ennis
IMEMC Audio Dept.