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Medics: Man dies in Gaza tunnel fall

May 20, 2012 6:24 P.M. (Updated: May 21, 2012 11:24 A.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma'an) -- A man was killed in a tunnel under the Gaza-Egypt border on Sunday, a medical official said.

Nader Omar Masraah fell inside the tunnel near the southern Rafah border in the Gaza Strip, emergency services spokesman Adham Abu Salmiya said.

Another man was injured when he received an electric shock in the tunnel, and was transferred to Abu Yousef Al-Najjar hospital in Rafah, he added.

On Thursday, 18-year-old Jihad Barakeh died after suffocating in a smuggling tunnel beneath the border, medics said.

Since Israel tightened its blockade on the Gaza Strip in 2007, goods smuggled in from Egypt through underground tunnels have provided a lifeline to the coastal enclave.

Under siege, Gaza's economy collapsed and a 2011 UN study found that unemployment rates in Gaza were among the highest in the world.

Gaza officials say over 160 young men have died at work in smuggling tunnels, but with a lack of alternatives many are still drawn to the hazardous profession.
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