Egypt-Gaza Tunnels Must Be Destroyed, Cairo Court Rules

An estimated 30 percent of goods that reach Gaza’s 1.7 million Palestinians come through the tunnels, circumventing the blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt for more than seven years.

Reuters
Reuters
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Reuters
Reuters

A Cairo court ruled on Tuesday that the government must destroy all tunnels between Egypt and the Gaza Strip, removing a route for smuggled weapons and other goods.

President Mohammed Morsi’s national security adviser Essam Haddad has said Egypt will not tolerate the two-way flow of smuggled arms through the tunnels that is destabilizing the Sinai Peninsula.

Despite close ties between the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas, many Egyptians fear Gaza is a security risk for Egypt, and Egyptian forces flooded some of the tunnels earlier this month.

“The court ruled to make it obligatory that the government destroys the tunnels between Egypt and the Gaza Strip,” Judge Farid Tanaghou said.

An estimated 30 percent of goods that reach Gaza’s 1.7 million Palestinians come through the tunnels, circumventing the blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt for more than seven years.

“I filed the case because I was worried about the state of national security in my country after the rise of the Muslim Brotherhood to power and its unclear policies and links with Hamas,” said Wael Hamdy, a lawyer who brought the case.

He said the case had been brought after 16 Egyptian border guards were killed last August by militants near the Gaza border.

Cairo said some of the gunmen had entered Egypt through the Gaza tunnels, an accusation denied by the Palestinians. Dozens of tunnels have been destroyed since that incident, but, according to Hamdy, 2,000 are still open.

A Palestinian man smuggling a goat through a tunnel in Sinai last year.Credit: AP

Click the alert icon to follow topics:

Comments

SUBSCRIBERS JOIN THE CONVERSATION FASTER

Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

SUBSCRIBE
Already signed up? LOG IN

ICYMI

Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott