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A New Iron Curtain - Literally
Egypt has begun the construction of a massive iron wall along its border with the Gaza Strip, in a bid to shut down smuggling tunnels into the territory. The wall will be nine to 10 kilometers long, and will go 20 to 30 meters into the ground, Egyptian sources said. It will be impossible to cut or melt.
The new plan is the latest move by Egypt to step up its counter-smuggling efforts. Although some progress had been made, the smuggling market in Gaza still flourishes.
Egyptian forces demolish tunnels or fill them with gas almost every week, often with people still inside them, and Palestinian casualties in the tunnels have been steadily rising.
Recently, Egypt examined several possibilities of blocking the tunnels, and joint American-Egyptian patrols have been seen in Rafah attempting to detect tunnels using underground sensors.
Construction of the wall has already begun. It will be made of enormous slates of steel, reaching deep into the ground. However, it is not expected to stem smuggling completely...