'Tunnels being used to smuggle goods out of Gaza'

With Egypt in crisis, tunnels under Philadelphi corridor now important lifeline of supplies for Sinai residents, report says.

By
February 3, 2011 20:00
1 minute read.
A Gaza smuggling tunnel.

Gaza smuggling tunnel 311. (photo credit: Ashley Bates)

 
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The tunnels under the Philadelphi Corridor between Gaza and Egypt, used in the past to smuggle arms and supplies from Sinai into Gaza, are now an important lifeline of supplies for Sinai residents facing acute shortages because of the turmoil in Egypt, the Lebanese daily Al-Akhbar reported Thursday.

According to the paper, which supports Hizbullah, traders in control of the tunnels have “been working for days” smuggling bread and food in the “opposite direction” – from Gaza into Egypt – because of “supply disruptions” from Cairo to Sinai.

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The paper acknowledges something that Israel has been arguing for months – that “Gaza’s markets are no longer experiencing a shortage in most food” products since Israel eased the blockade of the region in June.

The smuggling out of Gaza does not impact the supplies inside the Strip, those running the tunnels were quoted as saying.

This is not the first time the tunnels have been used to smuggle goods into Egypt.

Western officials said in the fall that Israeli products, specifically fruits and vegetables, were making their way through the tunnels to Egyptian markets.



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