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One Dead, Hundreds Injured in Latest Hamas-Led Gaza Riots

17 April 2018

Israeli Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman hailed the decline in rioters as a victory for Israel.

A massive tunnel built by the Hamas terror group in northern Gaza - the "longest and deepest" one ever found - has been destroyed after the Israeli military infiltrated the territory, officials said.

Israel destroyed the tunnel - which it said connected to several others within Gaza and could have been used for attacks - by filling it with material to make it inoperative. Isreal's military said the tunnel was "kilometers" long, but the exact length and depth was not immediately clear. "Residents of Gaza, Hamas is burning your money on tunnels to nowhere. We will get to them all".

Israel had been monitoring construction of the tunnel network for years but chose to move in after tunnel diggers began working their way up to the surface, a military spokesman told The Times of Israel.

The Hamas tunnel began below the Gaza Strip and went on for "several kilometres", well into Israeli territory, the IDF said.

"The IDF will not allow Israeli civilians to be harmed or Israeli sovereignty to be breached and will continue operating with determination in the face of all forms of terrorism", Manelis said in a statement. The opening of the tunnel on the Israel side stretched to Nahal Oz, a community in southern Israel.

"The [Israeli Defense Forces] doesn't seek an escalation. We are protecting our boundaries", Conricus informed The Times of all Israel.

In return, the reported proposal called for Hamas to pledge not to use its weapons against Israel for at least five years and would secure the border with Israel, on the basis of the plan called "Food for Security".

Conricus said the tunnel was adjacent to the site of recent mass protests, which Israel says Hamas is using as a cover for attacks.

If these demonstrations continue through to May 15 (Israel's 70th anniversary), as planned by Hamas, scores more Palestinians are likely to be killed, while increasing the probability of Israel invading Gaza for the fourth time, in an effort to end the crisis.

The most recent discovery was of a passage running "kilometers" from within Gaza to just over the border, Israel's military said on Sunday, accusing the enclave's dominant Hamas Islamists of being behind the project.

One Dead, Hundreds Injured in Latest Hamas-Led Gaza Riots