Until recently, Judea and Samaria Arabs would sneak into Israel by climbing the fence, cutting the barbed wire and severing the alarm system. But now security forces have foiled at least two infiltration attempts through tunnels dug under the fence near the Israeli Arab town of Taiba, Maariv reported.
The main concern is that terrorists would use these tunnels to abduct hitchhiking soldiers.
The Gaza tunnels, connecting the Hamas ruled strip to Egypt, are being used to smuggle weapons, food and construction materials, have long become the primary means of supplying the local Arab population. But the newly discovered tunnels connecting Judea and Samaria to Israel are not needed as supply routes – local Arabs enjoy direct access to goods, both receiving and ecporting. These new tunnels can only serve clandestine ends.
So far, the Arab terrorist cell that attempted to pass through the tunnels managed to flee before the army forces arrived, so their goals in infiltrating Israel, as well as their organizational affiliation are yet to be investigated.
The failed attempt to sneak through tunnels dug under the fence joins other common ways that the Arabs have been trying, including climbing over the fence, cutting off contact alert system and cutting the fence.
In the Tulkarm area, the IDF has discovered more sophisticated attempts to break through the fence, including the “window opening,” which involves cutting the fence, going through it and then leaving the cut part whole, so as not to arouse the suspicion of IDF patrols.
When completed, the Israeli security barrier’s total length will be approximately 700 kilometres (430 miles). It is credited with much of Israel’s success in nearly stopping terrorist attacks from Judea and Samaria.