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  • Hamas naval commandos during a rally in Gaza.

    Hamas naval commandos during a rally in Gaza. | Photo: Reuters

Published 15 March 2015

During the last Israeli attacks on Gaza last summer, most of the navy members were killed, but Hamas has trained new forces.

Palestine's Hamas resistance movement has completed the reconstruction of its naval commando force composed of dozens of trained divers whose purpose would be to attack strategic targets in Israel, local media reported Saturday.

During the Israeli’s summer of 2014 disproportionate attacks on Gaza, most of the Hamas navy members were killed, according to Palestine authorities, however Hamas has trained a new force whose role will be to protect the besieged enclave from further Tel Aviv attacks.

According to a government source, the Israeli regime has expressed concern about this situation, since Hamas can use the sea as a long tunnel extending from Gaza in Israel's south to Rosh Hanikra in the north border with Lebanon.

Tel Aviv has already announced that it has deployed a series of “maritime obstacles” in order to counter Hamas’ approach by sea. Israel’s ally Egypt has also expressed concern saying the naval commando unit is intended to harm its gas facilities in the Mediterranean.

Meanwhile, the Hamas leader Mahmoud Zahar issued a statement saying that his organization was not planning to wage underwater warfare in the region. But both Egypt and Israel have strict security measures that include orders to shoot and destroy Gazan fishing boats that approach them without prior notification.

​Last summer, the Palestinian divers successfully penetrated within a kilometer of Israeli territory, near the military base of Zikim, in one of the resistance movement's major achievements during the 50 days of fighting, between July-August 2014, during which over 2,130 Palestinians lost their lives and some 11,000 were injured. Most of the victims were civilians, including many children, elederly and women.

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