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Another killed in Gaza tunnels as rights group urges action

Jan. 20, 2013 9:47 P.M. (Updated: Jan. 21, 2013 8:42 P.M.)
GAZA CITY (Ma’an) -- A Palestinian man was killed and two others are missing after a tunnel under Gaza's border with Egypt collapsed, medics said Saturday.

Ibrahim Abu Mour, 19, was found dead after the tunnel caved in near Rafah, in south Gaza, they told Ma'an.

After a week of stormy weather, Gaza's tunnel network became unstable, and at least three people have died in the tunnels over the past week.

Gaza's border authorities said on Monday it would shut down all the tunnels for safety reasons.

A human rights group in Gaza this week urged the government to implement better safety measures and assess the benefits of the network as a whole, saying 232 people had been killed in collapsing tunnels.

"Most of the people who work in tunnels are from very low-income backgrounds and have been forced to undertake this kind of work to provide for their families under the difficult socio-economic conditions caused by the Israeli siege on Gaza," al-Mezan Center for Human Rights said.

The tunnel network developed as a vital source of goods under Israel's blockade of the coastal strip and Egyptian restrictions on the official Rafah crossing point.
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