The IDF uncovered a massive Hamas attack tunnel leading from Khan Younis, in the
southern Gaza Strip, into Israel, complete with an electrical supply and phone
The tunnel might have been intended for attacking or kidnapping
soldiers, or for moving terrorists from Gaza into Israel to commit an atrocity
against civilians in border towns and villages, army sources said
It took Hamas over a year to complete, and is tall enough inside
to allow people to stand fully upright as they travel along it. The tunnel is
buried some 20 meters underground as it crosses the Gaza border.
security source said it was the most well-designed terror tunnel found by the
IDF to date.
The tunnel was constructed using approximately 24,000
Israeli concrete slabs which the IDF had permitted into Gaza to ease the crisis
in the civilian construction sector, Southern Command chief Maj.-Gen. Sami
Turgeman said. As a result, Israel has stopped allowing concrete into Gaza as of
Sunday morning, he added.
“Last Monday, we exposed a terror tunnel that
penetrated Israeli territory, near where the IDF operates and where communities
are located,” Turgeman said, speaking near one of the tunnel
“This is the third tunnel we’ve found this year. It
constitutes a gross violation of Israeli territory. If Hamas carries out a
terrorism attack, it will pay a heavy prize, and Gaza will look different
afterward,” he warned.
“Hamas invested tens of millions of dollars into
constructing this. This is a terrorism industry. Instead of investing in
schools, or civilian industry and employment, Hamas invests in terror,” Turgeman
He added that the Hamas regime in Gaza “cynically exploited our
good intentions to assist the people of Gaza by allowing construction material
into the Strip, and used the material for a terror tunnel
According to the Southern Command’s assessments, Hamas is using
the current cease-fire to put into place terrorist infrastructure, which it
might then use at a time of its choosing, such as the next round of
Turgeman said that Hamas is under much pressure due to its
strategic deterioration, which followed the ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood
from power in Egypt, but that it nevertheless is continuing to build up its
rocket supply and is preoccupied with building up its military and terrorist
“If and when it decides to attack, Hamas will find us
prepared and it will pay a price,” Turgeman said.
The IDF uses a range of
means to uncover tunnel construction in the southern border region, many of
which are classified.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu praised security
forces for uncovering the terror tunnel from Gaza.
“This is part of our
policy – an aggressive policy against terrorism, including preventive action,
intelligence, initiated action, responsive action and, of course, Operation
Pillar of Defense,” Netanyahu said at the weekly cabinet meeting.
combination of all these actions and our policy has led to the fact that this
year has been the quietest in over a decade. However, we have witnessed an
increase in terrorist actions in recent weeks.”
Jerusalem Post staff
contributed to this report.