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Daily Israel Report

Five Hamas Terrorists Killed in Gaza Terror Tunnel Blast

Hamas admits deaths in terror tunnel blast near security fence, same day as apparently unrelated blast in Gaza City home.
By Ari Yashar
First Publish: 6/19/2014, 4:54 PM

Gaza terror tunnel (illustration)
Gaza terror tunnel (illustration)
Flash 90

Five Hamas terrorists were killed due to an explosion that occurred in a terror tunnel in Gaza on Thursday morning.

The explosion took place to the east of Gaza City, close to the security fence separating Israel and the Hamas-enclave of Gaza, according to Arab sources referenced by Yedioth Aharonoth.

Hamas reportedly initially denied that there were any injuries, and refused to explain what exactly occurred.

Eventually, Hamas told AFP that "five martyrs were killed in a resistance activity in Saghira neighborhood" in eastern Gaza City, without elaborating.

A local Arab security source was more forthright, telling AFP the "accidental explosion" happened "inside of an Al-Qassam Brigades tunnel, which collapsed on some 12 members."

The "work accident" is anticipated to have been a case of Hamas terrorists clumsily detonating a bomb they were planning to plant on the security fence, an attack pattern that has been used regularly and recently.

In an apparently unrelated incident, the Arab Ma'an News Agency reports that a blast occurred in the Tuffah neighborhood of Gaza City on Thursday around noon.

Witnesses were quoted saying the blast emanated from a house in the neighborhood, with Hamas Ministry of Health spokesperson Ashraf al-Qidra claiming there were no injuries in the explosion.

Al-Qidra reported that ambulances and fire fighters rushed to the site of the blast.

The IDF placed Iron Dome anti-missile defense units on the coastal region near Ashdod and Tel Aviv on Wednesday, in anticipation that terror activity from Gaza may flare up soon.

Their reasoning is that the Gaza-based Hamas terrorists may launch a missile barrage to support the Hamas terrorists in Judea and Samaria who kidnapped three Israeli teens last Thursday. The IDF is currently in the midst of a massive operation to rescue the three, aiming concurrently at destroying the Hamas terror infrastructure in the region.

Indeed, Gaza terrorists launched rockets at Israel on Wednesday, prompting an IAF airstrike on terror targets in retaliation. The rocket attack is the latest in a trickle of missiles, which have been regularly pouring in since the kidnapping last week.