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Israel seizes East Jerusalem land under 1950 law

[JURIST] Israel has reportedly begun seizing land in east Jerusalem land owned by Palestinians in the West Bank under a law passed in 1950. The land has been transferred to the Custodian of Absentee Property [UN Secretariat working paper with law text attached], a body formed by the law, according to documents from Israel's finance and justice ministries. The law allows Israel to seize property of those Palestians who left the country after the 1948 war. The law specifies an absentee owner as "anyone who in 1948 was in any part of the land of Israel that is outside the area of Israel." The owners may have no right to compensation for the property. Israeli lawyers, acting for the landowners, described the policy re-implemented by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon [official website] in July as a land grab. BBC News has more and continuing coverage of the Middle East conflict.

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