Photo: Defense Ministry
Israel thwarts smuggling of tons of explosives into Gaza
After examining tons of cargo said to be car oils for the strip, new lab discovers solids, gases, liquids and powder meant for mass production of explosives; Land Crossing Authority head says ‘lab greatly widens the tool box in daily struggle against smuggling into the Gaza Strip.'
An Israeli laboratory at the Kerem Shalom Gaza crossing recently thwarted an attempted smuggling of several tons of explosive substances that were headed for terror groups in the strip.
The lab, which was recently established at the crossing at the behest of the Land Crossings Authority in the Ministry of Defense, was called into action after a truck arrived at the area that was carrying what was said to be a large load of car oils.
Cargo of explosive substances headed for Gaza (צילום: דוברות משרד הביטחון)
Guards conducting the security checks grew suspicious of the truck’s content, and transferred specific oil types to the lab for further investigation, where it transpired that the oils were not intended for car engines, but were rather dangerous substances intended for the production of large quantities of explosive devices.
Following the discovery, the Land Crossings Authority unveiled the dangerous chemicals uncovered by the lab for the first time since it was recently established.
Lab experts who initiated the joint project between the Land Crossings Authority, the Shin Bet and the Police border crossings department use a wide range of advanced equipment to identify the substances, which included gas, liquids, powder and solids, before they enter Gaza.
The laboratory’s special methods to swiftly identify the dangerous materials are intended not only to limit terror activities in the southern enclave, but also to reduce delays that commonly accompany the entrance of cargo into the strip due to meticulous security checks.
Head of the Land Border Crossings Authority Brig. Gen. (res.) Kamil Abu Rokon, praised the work of the laboratory, noting the significant expansion of methods at its disposal to thwart similar smuggling attempts.
“The establishment of the chemicals lab greatly widens the ‘tool box’ for security officials in their daily and uncompromising struggle against smuggling into the Gaza Strip,” Rokon said.
“The lab’s abilities include a range of means and the most important of all is the human element—those who do the security checks at the crossings,” he added. “With our smart work, we know today how to locate forbidden materials that could help strengthen terror elements in the Gaza Strip.”