CBNNews.com - GAZA STRIP - The Israel Defense Forces (IDF) targeted arms smuggling tunnels along the Philadelphi Corridor -- the narrow strip of land separating the Gaza Strip from the Egyptian Sinai.
Before the air strikes began, the IAF (Israel Air Force) dropped thousands of leaflets in Rafah, the town near the Rafah border crossing with Egypt.
"Because Hamas uses your houses to hide and smuggle military weapons, the IDF will attack the area between the Egyptian border until the beach road," one UN official reported.
"For your safety and for the safety of your children, follow the instructions in this announcement," the leaflet, which specified the four neighborhoods that would be targeted, read.
Following the warning, some 5,000 Rafah residents took shelter in two UN schools, which had been designated as temporary shelters.
By 9:00 p.m. Wednesday evening, 30 homes housing openings to smuggling tunnels had been destroyed, Palestinian sources reported.
"We uncovered many tunnels for kidnapping soldiers, at least one car bomb, booby-trapped dolls, tunnels -- an underground city," IDF spokesman Brigadier General Avi Benayahu told Channel 10 news.
The IDF estimates that Hamas has dug around 300 smuggling under the border.