JERUSALEM (JTA) — Israeli soldiers found the opening of a large tunnel in Israeli territory dug from the Gaza Strip that officials believe is intended for use in terror activity.
The tunnel, which was discovered Monday near Kibbutz Nir Oz during a regular patrol near the border with Gaza, was built to execute terror attacks against Israeli civilians and soldiers, the Israel Defense Forces said in a statement.
"The tunnel, large enough to carry people, is the same kind of tunnel used in 2006 to ambush IDF soldiers & kidnap Gilad Shalit," the IDF said on its Twitter account.
Shalit, an Israeli soldier, was released by Hamas in October 2011 after more than five years in captivity in exchange for some 1,100 Palestinian prisoners, many of whom reportedly returned to participating in terror activities.
The tunnel was uncovered due to last week’s heavy rains throughout the region.
Palestinian terror groups, including Hamas, have called for the kidnapping of more Israeli soldiers in order to exchange them for Palestinians in Israeli jails.