AL-QUDS (Dispatches) – The
Zionist regime’s authorities remained short on answers Tuesday over how six Palestinian prisoners’ escape from a high-security jail went unnoticed and where they could have gone, with a vast manhunt still underway.
The group’s early-morning flight, through a hole made below a sink in a Gilboa prison cell to a tiny tunnel exit discovered by guards and police early Monday morning, sounds almost like a plotline from a drama.
In fact, it has made the escapees “heroes” to many Palestinians, with celebrations in the Jenin area of the occupied West Bank.
But the full weight of the occupying regime’s security arsenal has been deployed to catch them, including aerial drones, checkpoints on roads and an army mission to Jenin, where many of the men locked up for their roles in attacks on the regime grew up.
Five of the prisoners were said to belong to the Palestinian resistance movement Islamic Jihad, hailing from towns near the occupied northern West Bank city of Jenin.
The cellmates, serving life sentences, are believed to have fled through an underground tunnel from the Israeli prison, which they had managed to dig over the past few months.
An initial investigation into the escape of the Palestinian prisoners shows that surveillance cameras recorded the moment the men exited the tunnel, but none of the guards in the control room noticed.
One of the guards at the Gilboa jail, who was on duty in the watchtower overlooking the tunnel opening, fell asleep during the escape, the probe – launched by the regime’s prison authority – revealed on Tuesday.
‘Unique Achievement, Strong Slap in Face of Occupiers’
The Lebanese resistance movement Hezbollah lauded the heroic escape as a strong slap in the face of the occupying regime.
Expressing congratulations to Palestinian people and resistance groups on the success of the prison break, Hezbollah praised in a statement on Monday the operation as a “unique achievement” and said it was highly commendable.
“The operation was a one-of-a-kind achievement and a strong slap in the face of the Israeli occupation forces as well as their strict security measures,” the statement said.
The Lebanese resistance movement added, “It is a further evidence of the vitality, smartness, patience and continuous struggle of the Palestinian people to liberate their land and prisoners.”
Hezbollah stressed that the achievement is regarded as a new chance to highlight the plight of Palestinian prisoners at the regime’s jails, and an opportunity to expose Israel’s abusive practices as well as the serious violations of the Palestinian prisoners’ rights.
The Qassam Brigades, the military wing of the Gaza-based Palestinian resistance movement Hamas, hailed as “heroic” the escape of Palestinian inmates from the highly-fortified Gilbao Prison.