IDF soldiers in desert exercise 311.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
The IDF and Israel Police intercepted a powerful terrorist bomb on the Egyptian
border early Tuesday and said the device could have been used to carry out a
mass-casualty attack. The intended target could have been a southern town or
village, the army believes.
Security forces who were carrying out
anti-smuggling operations overnight Monday found the device on the Israeli side
of the border, near the Philadelphi Corridor.
Soldiers spotted an
individual walking in the area, who threw down a bag and fled the scene after
realizing he had been seen.
Maj. M, who commands an Engineering Corps
company that was called in to neutralize the device, said, “We reached the scene
in the middle of the night and neutralized the device using a remote-control
robot. We used our own small explosive device to make the bomb safe, while
keeping our forces at a safe distance.”
The process of making the device
safe took several hours.
“It could have caused many casualties had it
fallen into the hands of terror organizations,” Maj. M added.
believes the bomb was intended for a suicide bomb belt or for striking civilians
(rather than a passing military vehicle), since metal balls designed to act as
shrapnel were recovered near the device.
Security forces have long been
concerned that as Egyptian control over the Sinai Peninsula erodes, jihadi
elements will take advantage of smuggling routes used by drug runners and other
The military views the latest attempted bombing as such a