Al Jazeera aired footage on Friday documenting al-Qassam Brigades militants in a Gaza tunnel, less than a day after airing similar footage of Hamas terrorists inside an attack tunnel.
Tamer Al-Mishal, one of the Qatari network's reporters, showed in the latest video a tunnel in the town of Al-Qarara, on the eastern end of Khan Yunis – the site of fierce fighting between the IDF and terrorists.
|Al Jazeera report from inside Gaza tunnel|
However, the militants made no claim that the terror tunnel was a passageway across the border into Israel, differentiating the tunnel from those targeted by the IDF during the 29-day-long Operation Protective Edge.
Al-Mishal's story has won praise on social media networks as a "miracle" after the reporter managed to talk to members of Hamas' military wing, who claimed they had been locked inside a tunnel for at least 21 days with no supplies.
Of the 29 terrorists who were in the tunnel during the operation, only 23 were left. They claimed that parts of the tunnel had been bombed by Israel, and six of the terrorists were killed either fighting the IDF or in rescue operations after the tunnel demolition.
One of the terrorists, who – according to the report – belonged to an elite unit in the al-Qassam Brigades, claimed that he and his friends were locked inside the tunnel for days without contact to the outside world.
"We couldn't believe it… we found a water source deep in the ground," he said, who claimed the group accumulated water in buckets. He also showed the remains from the dates they ate, claiming that the group split the dates in two to provide them enough energy during Ramadan.
The claims in the report could not be independently verified.
On Thursday, Al-Mishal interviewed Hamas operatives and field commanders, one of them stressing they do not intend to leave their posts following the ceasefire and that they were ready to renew rocket fire and terror attacks against Israel if their demands – among other things, the lifting of the Gaza blockade and the building of a seaport – are not met.
"Our rockets are still aimed at the Israeli vehicles and tanks that are staying in one place. We've blown up more than one of the enemy's tanks in the border area," one of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam militants serving at the armored unit told the reporter who toured their posts.