The United Nations agency responsible for Palestinian refugees revealed on Sunday it had notified Israel that it had discovered a Hamas terror tunnel under a school in the Gaza Strip operated by UNRWA - the United Nations Relief Works Agency - two weeks ago.
Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday credited Israel's "groundbreaking technology" for the discovery of the tunnel without giving further details.
Israeli soldiers sit on a tank close to the Israeli border with the Gaza Strip on October 30, 2017, near Kibbutz Kissufim in southern Israel.
"Yet another terror tunnel under an UNRWA schoolyard". Because, doing so accomplishes one of two things: either Israel will avoid targeting Hamas operations under such a sensitive target, or children and agency staff will be killed in the cross-fire, providing ammunition for Hamas' PR campaigns against Israel.
But the Hamas military wing said one of its members was killed in a rescue effort.
Seven militants were killed and ten injured after the Israeli army bombarded on Monday a tunnel underneath the borders between southeast Gaza Strip and Israel, medics and security sources said. "Today we detected a tunnel and destroyed it and we will continue to do so".
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He did not explain why Israel made a decision to detonate the tunnel this week, although the presence of fighters inside may have triggered the Israeli action.
The IDF said the tunnel was "detonated from within Israel, adjacent to the security fence".
Islamic Jihad spokesman in Gaza Dawood Shihab told reporters "our response to this crime will be taken in the right moment".
Hamas has been the de-facto ruler in the Gaza Strip since 2007 after defeating Abbas' long-dominant Fatah party in parliamentary elections.
The incident comes only days before Hamas is expected to hand over control of Gaza's borders to the internationally recognized Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority (PA). Israel has warned that it will not accept a unity government that includes Hamas if it does not disarm and recognise the country, among other demands.