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May 26, 2016 6:11 am

Hamas Diverts Most of Civilian Cement Sent to Gaza for Terror Activities

avatar by Steven Emerson

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An IDF soldier at the entrance to a Hamas tunnel. An arrested Hamas operative has provided information about the Palestinian terror group’s tunnel-digging operations. Photo: Wikipedia.

An IDF soldier at the entrance to a Hamas tunnel. Photo: Wikipedia.

Hamas is stealing nearly all of the cement that Israel sends into Gaza for civilian reconstruction efforts, in order to rebuild the organization’s terrorist infrastructure, the Jerusalem Post reports.

Speaking to the United Nations World Humanitarian Summit in Istanbul on Tuesday, Israel’s Foreign Ministry Director-General Dore Gold described how Hamas is “cynically exploiting” Israel’s assistance to Gaza in order to “rebuild [the terrorist group’s] military capacity.”

“From our own investigations we found that out of every 100 sacks of cement that come into the Gaza Strip [from Israel], only five or six are transferred to civilians…a hundred sacks is what is necessary to rebuild a home, the rest are confiscated by Hamas and used for military purposes,” Gold said.

In addition to allowing the building materials into Gaza, hospitals in Israel’s south have also treated injured Gaza residents, Gold said, including family members of Hamas terrorists.

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Israel faces an important dilemma on this front, trying to provide humanitarian aid intended for a civilian population, while Hamas diverts the vast majority of the assistance for terrorist activities targeting Israel.

“Since October, Israel has let into Gaza 4,824,000 tons of building materials…but these have often times been seized and used to build new attack tunnels penetrating Israeli territory,” Gold said.

The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) continues its campaign to uncover cross-border attack tunnels leading into Israel from the Gaza Strip. Recent discoveries confirm that Hamas maintains underground capabilities dedicated to the kidnapping and murder of Israeli civilians.

Since the 2014 summer war ended, Hamas has openly invested significant amounts of resources in the reconstruction of its offensive tunnel capabilities at the expense of Gaza’s civilian population. The terrorist organization devotes roughly 1,000 operatives — working 24 hours a day, six days a week — and millions of dollars per month solely to its underground tunnel network.

Steven Emerson is the Executive Director the Investigative Project on Terrorism (www.investigativeproject.org) where this article first appeared.

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