Entrance to tunnel connecting between Israel and Gaza, October 2013.
Entrance to tunnel connecting between Israel and Gaza, October 2013. Photo by Eliyahu Hershkovitz
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23 fighters from Al-Qassam brigades, Hamas' military wing, were rescued from a tunnel that collapsed at the beginning of Israel's Operation Protective Edge, Hamas said in a statement on Wednesday.

According to Anadolu Agency, the militants entered the tunnel in the southern Gaza Strip, preparing to attack Israeli soldiers, when IDF missiles struck and collapsed the tunnel.

"Rescue teams dug the area to extract the mujahideen (fighters) and they were surprised to find us alive," W.A., a member of the Brigades, was quoted as saying.

On Monday, the IDF said it had demolished the last known Hamas tunnel. Overall, 32 tunnels were destroyed by the IDF during the operation.