IDF Destroys Hamas Tunnel Running Under Kerem Shalom Crossing
JNS.org – The Israeli military said Tuesday that it struck over 65 Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in the Gaza Strip, in retaliation for massive mortar fire by terrorists on southern Israel.
The IDF said it targeted six military compounds, munition storage warehouses, naval targets and terror headquarters belonging to both terrorist groups.
One of the targets was a Hamas terror tunnel that penetrated deep into Israeli territory and ran under the Kerem Shalom crossing – the only land goods crossing between Israel and Gaza.
The tunnel, described by as the IDF as “unique,” stretched some 900 meters (2,950 feet) underground, breaching Egyptian territory before winding back into Israel. The IDF said it was detected while still in its “mining phase,” suggesting it had yet to become operational.
This is the second tunnel to compromise the Kerem Shalom crossing and the 10th terror tunnel the military has destroyed since October 2017.
IDF Spokesperson Brig. Gen. Ronen Manelis confirmed the tunnel was destroyed, saying it was “a dual-purpose tunnel meant for both terrorist activity and smuggling.”
He denounced the mortar barrage, saying it was “a serious, dangerous and planned terrorist attack against civilians and children. Palestinian Islamic Jihad is a terrorist organization that is based on Iranian ideology and funding, and today it used Iranian- made weapons.”
He added that “how the next few days go is up to Hamas. They do Iran’s bidding. … Just as Hamas allows this [fire on Israel] it can maintain calm. We are prepared for any scenario.”