The Israel Defense Forces over the last few days destroyed the remainder of a Palestinian tunnel reaching inside Israeli territory, after blowing up the Gaza end of it during the war this past summer.
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Loud explosions were heard in the northern Gaza Strip as the troops completed their work in the Nahal Oz area near the border with the coastal territory.
An Israeli military source said that the troops worked alongside the Gaza security fence, but entirely inside Israeli territory. During the mission, a number of old weapons were discovered in the area, including an RPG and machine guns. The army said that the weapons did not appear usable, and that they too were destroyed during the mission.
The army said that it had been monitoring the tunnel since Operation Protective Edge this summer, and that "the route of the neutralized tunnel was in continuous IDF control prior to this mission."
Over the last few months, the IDF's Engineering Corp has been testing three technological means for improving its method of discovering and destroying tunnels. A senior Engineering Corp officer told military reporters two weeks ago that part of these means have already proven recently to be "quite successful."
A Haaretz investigation last autumn showed that the IDF's ability to destroy the tunnels over the course of the summer war was impeded by large gaps in training and a lack of appropriate equipment.
During the fighting, the IDF occupied an area about two kilometers wide on the outskirts of the built-up Palestinian area, along the length of the Gaza Strip from the north to the south, in order to destroy the 32 attack tunnels located by the various branches of Israeli intelligence.