Body found after Gaza tunnel collapse – Hamas
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Body found after Gaza tunnel collapse – Hamas

Passage into Sinai, destroyed as Egypt floods area to curb smuggling, was a 'trade tunnel,' local official says

Palestinians inspect the damage after Egyptian forces flooded smuggling tunnels dug beneath the Gaza-Egypt border, in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, on September 18, 2015. (Abed Rahim Khatib/ Flash90)
Palestinians inspect the damage after Egyptian forces flooded smuggling tunnels dug beneath the Gaza-Egypt border, in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, on September 18, 2015. (Abed Rahim Khatib/ Flash90)

A Gazan was found dead Saturday and another is still missing after the collapse of a tunnel on the Egypt border, the interior ministry in the Islamist Hamas-run enclave said.

On Thursday, rescue services said seven men had been trapped in the collapse of a tunnel.

Five were rescued, but “the body of Fadi Abu Dan was pulled out as the search continues for someone else,” the ministry said on Saturday.

Several media outlets said the additional body may have been found as well, but official sources did not confirm the reports.

On Thursday, a local civil defense official described the underground passage from the southern Gaza town of Rafah into neighboring Egypt as a “trade tunnel.”

The cave-in, the sixth since January, was caused by Egyptian flooding of the border zone in its campaign to stop smuggling, the official told AFP.

Since January 26, at least 12 Gazans have been killed in five separate tunnel collapses with both Israel and Egypt operating against the diggers.

An Israeli-Egyptian blockade severely restricts the movement of people and goods into and out of the territory.

The passages to Egypt are used for transit of commercial goods, cash, people and weapons, according to Israeli and Egyptian authorities.

Times of Israel staff contributed to this report.

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