Defense Minister Moshe Ya'alon (Likud) welcomed the IDF's discovery of a terror tunnel Monday, noting it as a strategic step in defeating Hamas's "informational war."
"The exposure of a Hamas terror tunnel by the IDF and the security establishment near the Gaza border is an important operational achievement and the result of the very extensive effort of the State of Israel on the subject in recent years," said Ya'alon.
"We have no illusions about Hamas's intentions," he continued. "Even before Operation Protective Edge, and of course afterwards, we have been devoting considerable efforts – technological, operational, and intelligence – to detect tunnels in Gaza."
"During the last several years we have found many tunnels, and we continue to make strenuous efforts to do so," he added. "Our mission to discover tunnels, most of which are far from the public eye, involves the best forces of the State of Israel – from the army, the Shin Bet, and the defense establishment."
"The search for tunnels is a priority of the security forces and the IDF," Ya'alon emphasized, "We do not spare any method to do so. The tunnels we are dealing with are very complex, and the State of Israel is a world leader in the field. This struggle requires us to have determination, creativity, responsibility and discretion on the part of those involved."
"In recent months, Hamas has experienced the effects of the collapse of tunnels they have dug – they have been killed on the job and now [face] exposure," he continued, adding that Hamas "can can draw conclusions, cease engaging in [terror] and will be free to help improve the quality of life in Gaza [and] the welfare of the residents there."
"We do not want confrontation, but if Hamas tries to challenge the State of Israel and disrupt the lives of residents of communities near the Gaza Strip, he will be beaten with a very hard blow. We will not tolerate such attempts."