Explosive tunnel detonated during IDF activity in Gaza

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Explosion occurs during IDF (Zahal) activity intended to locate explosives in the southern Gaza Strip. No injuries to IDF (Zahal) forces

Date: 11/08/2012, 11:27 PM     Author: IDF (Zahal) Website

An explosive tunnel was detonated today (Thursday, November 8), during activity carried out by IDF (Zahal) forces in southern Gaza intended to locate terrorists’ explosives. No IDF (Zahal) soldiers were injured.

IDF (Zahal) Spokesperson Brig. Gen. Yoav (Poly) Mordechai stated that in recent weeks, a number of incidents have occurred in the southern Gaza Strip, including an attack using explosives against an IDF (Zahal) armored personnel carrier, an attack that injured a company commander, and another attack with explosives two days ago. Subsequently, the new Gaza Division Commander decided to operate proactively to the west of the Gaza border fence.

An IDF (Zahal) engineering force located a number of powerful explosive devices to the west of the fence. With the end of this force’s activity, as it worked to repair the border fence, explosives in a tunnel were detonated. This caused a very large explosion that exposed a tunnel roughly four meters deep and four meters wide. A vacant IDF (Zahal) vehicle that was in the area was thrown into the air from the force of the explosion.

“It is possible that the incident was related to the discovery of explosives west of the [Gaza border] fence,” said the IDF (Zahal) Spokesperson. “We understand that this was an explosive tunnel or a tunnel that was intended for other things since there was a gap between the explosion and the neutralization. This was a very large tunnel, something which we haven’t experienced lately.”

Tomorrow morning, IDF (Zahal) forces will continue searching in the area, and a situation assessment will be held, led by GOC Southern Command Maj. Gen. Tal Russo.

The IDF (Zahal) will not tolerate any attempt to harm Israeli civilians, and will operate against anyone who uses terror against the State of Israel. The Hamas terror organization is solely responsible for any terrorist activity emanating from the Gaza Strip.