The Hamas journal Al-Risala claimed on Wednesday morning that the IDF unsuccessfully tried to prevent the terrorist organization's "military wing," the Al-Qassam Brigades, from continuing to pave an attack road adjacent to the security border.
Construction on the road – which is located a mere 250 meters (820 feet) from the border, reportedly began two weeks ago, with Hamas activists distributing photos of the paving taking place under Al-Qassam Brigades guard.
According to the Hamas mouthpiece as cited by Yedioth Aharonoth, four IDF military bulldozers and two cars crossed the border to the east of Rafah as the IDF conducted deterrent fire and drones flew over the area.
It should be noted that the original report about the road showed photos allegedly taken near Kibbutz Nahal Oz, which is located near northeast Gaza. Rafah, however, is in the southern tip of Gaza, bordering Sinai. One of the reports thus appears to be wrong, unless the road is being paved at both places at the same time.
The Hamas report went on to claim that Al-Qassam Brigades jeeps arrived in the region to secure its bulldozers against the IDF force, adding that IDF-owned civilian jeeps and army vehicles were stationed nearby.
Regarding the attack road, senior Hamas member Fathi Hamad said last Friday that the road is meant to be ready for "the moment to attack."
Yisrael Beytenu chairperson Avigdor Liberman on Saturday night responded, warning, "the Israeli government is burying its head in the sand, and if the tragedy that is already written on the wall happens – the prime minister and defense minister will not be able to clean themselves of the responsibility."
In an apparently unrelated event on Wednesday, sources in Gaza reported that a Palestinian Arab was shot to the east of Khan Younis by IDF forces from watchtowers over the border, after the man approached the border fence and breached the buffer zone. The man was shot in the stomach and left in moderate condition, reports AFP.
Separately, four Gazan fisherman were arrested off the coast of Gaza City after two fishing vessels breached the designated fishing zone, reports Ma'an News Agency. The arrests come as part of the IDF's attempts to crack down on naval weapons smuggling.