Official sources: Egypt’s iron wall is not the only threat to tunnel trade
Official sources: Egypt’s iron wall is not the only threat to tunnel trade
Sunday, May 9,2010 18:03

Different security and official sources stated that Egypt’s steel wall is not the most serious threat to the tunnel trade in the besieged Gaza Strip, but the other tight measures that target tunnels and workmen.

The sources told the Palestinian information center (PIC) that the perforated pipes which Egypt had planted along the borderline near its iron wall and intends to pump sea water through it in order to cause cracks and landslides leading to the destruction of tunnels is the most dangerous threat not only to the tunnel trade, but also to the groundwater aquifer and the Palestinian ecology.

They affirmed that the pipes and other Egyptian measures such as pumping poisonous gas into the tunnels and detonating them are the real danger to the trade, especially since Gaza tunnel workmen had managed to breach the iron wall.

The sources stressed that the tunnels are a Palestinian innovation born out of the need that resulted from the blockade and will remain there as long as the besieging parties still refuse to open the crossings.

For his part, an official Egyptian source confirmed to the PIC what was reported by the BBC about the success of Gaza tunnel workmen in penetrating the iron wall.

The source explained that the workmen used thermal diggers to breach parts of the wall, but he said that the wall is not finished yet and it will be electrified and supported with a network of underground water pipes in order to make it difficult for them to penetrate the wall.

In a separate incident, a Palestinian medical source reported that paramedics saved the lives of eight Palestinian tunnel workmen who suffered breathing difficulty after their tunnel collapsed at dawn Saturday.

1.5 million people in impoverished Gaza largely rely on the network of tunnels on the border to secure their vital needs since Israel and Egypt sealed Gaza off after the Movement of Hamas won the elections.