The coordinator of IDF activities in the territories major General Yoav Mordechai said in an interview with Palestinian news Agency MAAN that the tunnels of the terrorist organization Hamas in the Gaza strip is «the tunnels of death, which are the only sector of the trouble.»
Mordechai blamed Hamas that builds tunnels due to the population sector.
In response to the question about the possible involvement of Israel to frequent collapses of tunnels in Gaza, the IDF General said briefly: «know the Lord».
Recall that in the last two weeks in Gaza was hit at least five tunnels, including at least three so-called «tunnels of Jihad». As a result of these collapses killed at least nine Hamas militants, and several are still missing. Among those killed in the recent collapse of the tunnel 39-year-old field commander of the «Brigades Izaddin al-kasama» Fuad Abu Ashour, Ataui and 23-year-old Haidar al-Zahar, a nephew of one of the Hamas leaders Mahmoud AZ-Zahar.
Recall that last week, Hamas confirmed the death of seven militants in the result of the collapse of «tunnel of Jihad» in the Northern part of the Gaza strip. Then they said that the tunnel collapsed due to heavy rains. In this case it was a concrete tunnel designed for regular militia action, and not on conventional tunnel smugglers. This tunnel was used during the operation protective edge to steal the senior Sergeant of the IDF soldiers Oron Shaul.
During the anti-terrorist operation «enduring rock» (summer of 2014) were discovered dozens of tunnels leading from Gaza into Israeli territory. Largely, for the destruction of these tunnels, it was decided to conduct a ground operation in Gaza. Then it was destroyed just 32 tunnel terrorists. The last such tunnel was destroyed by the military in February 2015. But after operation protective edge about the discovery of the Israeli military new tunnels of the terrorists has not been reported, although residents of the settlements located near the Gaza border, has repeatedly stated that hear the echoes of underground works.
After August 2014, the IDF completed the operation «enduring rock», the command «Brigades Izaddin al-kasama» have made significant efforts to restore the bases in Beit Hanoun, Shujie and Khan Younis. Special attention pays Hamas underground utilities, which provide the redeployment of militants and implemented approaches to rocket mines. In addition, thousands of employees were involved in the restoration of old and creation of new tunnels on the borders of Gaza – on the southern direction, where the tunnels crossed arms and goods from Egypt, as well as the East and North, where the tunnels allow militants to enter Israeli territory. During the construction of these tunnels were used the concrete is delivered by contraband from Egypt, including from individuals who are not able to complete the rehabilitation of their homes due to lack of funds and materials, and he sold concrete to Hamas, as well as the materials that Gas received as humanitarian aid.
Over the past few years the Egyptian military has destroyed more than 1,500 tunnels on the southern border of the Gaza strip. Last year a programme was initiated for the total elimination of such underground utilities and to prevent further attempts at construction of tunnels. Egyptian authorities, despite protests from the leadership of Hamas, continue the flow of sea water through the pipes from the Mediterranean sea along the border with the Gaza strip with a view to the total elimination of underground tunnels, used by smugglers and terrorists. These works also allow to detect tunnels, protected against water: for example, in November last year on the border with Gaza by the Egyptians was first identified and destroyed «steel» tunnel, which was a design width and height of several meters, with a wall thickness of about 40 centimeters. This tunnel went into Egyptian territory in the 200 meters and was under construction.