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      Gov´t Watchdog to Probe Inaction Against Tunnel Terrorists

      The government ombudsman is asking why Israel has not been able to prevent terrorists from digging tunnels which are used for smuggling and planting explosives.
      First Publish: 4/22/2005, 10:36 AM / Last Update: 4/22/2005, 12:02 PM

      Tunnel blasts have killed 11 IDF soldiers and injured many others since the beginning of Arab escalation of violence against Israel in September, 2000. Terrorists also have used tunnels for smuggling arms, weapons and drugs.

      The Comptroller's office wants to know why Israeli military officials have rejected initiatives by Ben Gurion University scientists to prevent the tunnel explosion attacks. They have occurred along the Philadelphi Route which runs through the border city of Rafiah, where Prime Minister Ariel Sharon has proposed that Egyptian soldiers take responsibility for security.

      IDF officials have said the military has been trying to find solutions to the problem, and Arutz-7 has learned that Ben Gurion geologists recently concluded a study on the issue that the military requested.

      Ben Gurion scientists several years ago suggested to the IDF a defense system against the tunnel terrorists, but the military rejected it. Several systems have been tested since then, but the IDF did not use them.

      Military officials replied that the IDF has invested 16 million shekels ($3.7 million) in efforts to prevent terrorists from digging tunnels.