North Sinai — The steel barrier Egypt is erecting along its border with the Gaza Strip has reportedly reached the final stage of construction, with eyewitnesses saying that 45 trucks bearing reinforced steel sheets had arrived at the site within the last two days.
Sections of the barrier in the north and south of the divided border city of Rafah have already been completed. The last stage, now under construction, runs through the heavily populated Salah Eddin corridor, where the majority of alleged Palestinian smuggling tunnels–used to supply the besieged enclave with badly needed food and medicine–are located.
On Monday, Egyptian security services reportedly discovered three new smuggling tunnels in the Salah Eddin and Sarsouria districts. According to security sources, spare parts worth an estimated LE1 million were discovered at the sites.
In a related development, an African national was killed while he and others were trying to cross the border illegally from Egypt into Israel. The suspected infiltrators reportedly shot at Egyptian border guards while attempting to make the crossing, prompting security forces to return fire, killing one and wounding another. The rest were forced to return to the Egyptian side.
Authorities were unable to identify the nationality of the African killed in the incident, who was not carrying identification papers. The African wounded in the gunfight was from Cameroon, said security sources, while the others had come from Eritrea and Ethiopia.
Translated from the Arabic Edition.