Israel says it has uncovered a Hamas tunnel network under the headquarters of the embattled UN Palestinian refugee agency in Gaza City — and that the secret system siphoned electricity directly from the site.
Footage uploaded to X on Saturday shows a sprawling tunnel system under the HQs for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees that ran nearly 60 feet deep and a half-mile long, with one of 10 entrances found near a UNRWA school, according to the Israel Defense Forces.
Electrical equipment at the scene suggests that the militants siphoned energy from the relief organization to power its terror infrastructure, the IDF said.
The IDF said it found similar power systems installed in tunnel networks that ran beneath hospitals in Gaza and stole electricity from the buildings.
UNRWA is currently under investigation after it was revealed that at least 12 staff members participated in the brutal Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attack that left more than 1,200 dead in Israel.
Israeli intelligence also claims that the bulk of staffers in the UNRWA, the sole relief agency for most of Gaza’s nearly 2 million refugees, have relatives with ties to the Palestinian terror group.
IDF Lt. Col. Ido, whose last name was redacted by the military, told reporters during a tour of the tunnels Thursday that it was evident that the newly uncovered network was being powered by UNRWA.
“This is the electricity room, you can see all around here,” he said, pointing to the wires that allegedly connected the UNRWA’s headquarters to the tunnel. “The batteries, the electricity on walls, everything is conducted from here, all the energy for the tunnels which you walked through them are powered from here.”
The Israeli military also said it found various rifles, ammunition, grenades and explosives inside the headquarters, too.
Despite the claims, reporters on the tour said the Israeli military did not provide definitive proof that Hamas terrorists were actively operating beneath the UNRWA headquarters.
UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini said in a statement that the relief agency had no knowledge of the Hamas facilities underground but noted that the findings merit an “independent inquiry.”
Lazzarini added that the headquarters had been inspected in September and showed no signs of being tampered by Hamas.
“UNRWA is a human development and humanitarian organization that does not have the military and security expertise nor the capacity to undertake military inspections of what is or might be under its premises,” Lazzarini wrote about the allegations on X.
The UN official suggested that the alleged powerline connection between the tunnel and the base and the weapons found were likely new as the agency has not revisited the headquarters since it was evacuated Oct. 12.
Lazzarini also noted that whenever a Hamas tunnel or shaft was found near UNRWA premises in the past, both the terror group and Israel were notified, with the information made publicly available.
Given the UN group’s transparency over the tunnels, Lazzarini slammed Israel for allegedly not informing the UNRWA about the new tunnel, with the agency only learning about it through media reports.
With Post wires