World Bulletin/News Desk
The army on Tuesday demolished two houses in the Egyptian border city of Rafah believed to conceal smuggling tunnels linked to the Gaza Strip, eyewitnesses said Tuesday.
Military bulldozers backed by armored vehicles destroyed the two houses, along with three other nearby tunnels, the eyewitnesses said.
Earlier the same day, the army destroyed five underground fuel tanks holding some 300,000 liters of fuel, in addition to ten pumps used to transport fuel across Egypt's border into the Gaza Strip.
The army crackdown on Egypt-Gaza border tunnels, ongoing since June, comes as part of a larger offensive against militant activity in the restive Sinai Peninsula. The operation has squeezed the besieged coastal enclave, which relies heavily on commodities smuggled from Egypt.
In 2010, Israel eased its longstanding blockade of the strip due to the international outcry that followed its attack on a Turkish-led aid flotilla bound for Gaza. Nine Turkish activists were killed in the maritime raid.
With the easing of the flow of goods through Israeli-controlled overland crossing points, the tunnels were dedicated largely to transporting items restricted by Israel, mainly construction materials and Egyptian fuel, which is sold in the strip at half the price of Israeli petrol.
According to a recent UN report, 80 percent of all tunnel activity has now been brought to a halt.Güncelleme Tarihi: 13 Ağustos 2013, 16:16