Over 400 kms tunnels underneath Gaza: Iranian Army Chief

IANS Photo

IANS Photo

Tel Aviv, Oct ober31 (IANS): Chief of Staff of Iranian Army Major General Mohammad Bagheri on Tuesday claimed that there are over 400 kilometers (248 miles) of tunnels underneath the northern section of the Gaza Strip, media reports said.

“Vehicles and motorcycles can pass through some of them,” Major General Mohammad Bagheri said during a conference on civil defense in Tehran, according to the Iranian Tasnim News Agency.

He said that some of the tunnels have entrance inside Israel as well, Times of Israel reported.

Israel has touted the underground sensors of the Gaza barrier, officially completed in 2021, as having the ability to detect digging under the border, though the fence aboveground flaws were exposed on October 7.

During Israel’s war with Gaza in 2014, the armed groups cross-border tunnels to stage a number of small-scale attacks.

The Iranian Army Chief said that the reason the Israeli army has waited to launch a full-scale ground invasion into Gaza is because it knows that such an operation will mark another defeat, Times of Israel reported.

The myriad tunnels under Gaza are best known as passageways used to smuggle goods from Egypt and launch attacks into Israel, CNN reported.

But there exists a second underground network that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) colloquially refer to as the “Gaza metro.” It’s a vast labyrinth of tunnels, by some accounts several kilometres underground, used to transport people and goods; to store rockets and ammunition caches; and house Hamas command and control centers, all away from the prying eyes of the IDF’s aircraft and surveillance drones, CNN reported.