The IDF lifted a media blackout Thursday morning on a botched terrorist infiltration into Israel.
The IDF confirmed that it had successfully prevented 13 terrorists from Gaza, who were attempting to secretly enter Israel via a terror tunnel, from making their way into freely into Israeli territory.
The terrorists managed to dig their tunnel from Gaza into an Israeli kibbutz near the border. The tunnel, which was one of several recently uncovered by the IDF, was being closely monitored for any activity. The IDF was aware of an impending infiltration and was on high alert on the border.
Raw Footage of Hamas Terror Attack Being Thwarted
“We knew this would come. We knew specifically about this tunnel. We knew Hamas would try to launch a terror attack in any way it can,” IDF Spokesman Brig. Gen. Moti Almoz told Channel 2.
“The attack was meant to be a killing spree in one of the villages nearby,” he added.
At around 4:30 a.m. Thursday morning, the terrorists began to make their way into Israel. IDF lookouts stationed near Kibbutz Shufa kept soldiers waiting to attack the tunnel apprised of the terrorist’s movements.
IDF Spokesman Peter Lerner said that “different sensors” tracked the movement of the terrorists. The terrorists entered some 250 meters into Israel by lying flat on the ground in an open area outside the kibbutz.
IDF forces, waiting near the mouth of the tunnel, attacked the group of terrorists. The IDF confirmed several fatalities and that the tunnel had been destroyed. No IDF soldiers were injured in the ambush.
The area was closed off by the IDF and local residents were told to stay in their homes for many hours. The IDF searched the area for other terrorists and fired artillery and mortar rounds at the entrance of the tunnel in Gaza.
Photos from the scene show that the Hamas terrorists were carrying shoulder-mounted RPG rockets.
However, while the terror attack was successfully intercepted by the IDF, Hamas is taking a different route. According to reports quoting Gaza radio stations, Hamas is claiming that the operation was a success. They are also stating that the terrorists managed to kill Israelis.
Hamas made similar false claims after members of the groups were killed in a failed amphibious landing into Israeli territory. Hamas claimed that the terrorists were victorious.
The use of terror tunnels by Hamas and other radical Islamist terror organizations in the Gaza Strip is a popular way to smuggle goods, weapons and people in and out of the Strip. Tunnels have been used to infiltrate Israel and Egypt.