Avi Issacharoff, Anshel Pfeffer
August 24, 2011 - 12:00am

Chief of Staff Benny Gantz ordered on Wednesday that the Israel Defense Forces increase defensive measures along Israel's border with Egypt due to intelligence that terrorist groups are planning attacks similar to the ones last Thursday in which eight Israelis were killed.

The new measures include putting in place additional means of electronic and visual intelligence gathering as well bolstering the Navy Command Center in the southern city of Eilat.

Also on Wednesday, security officials said that the Islamic Jihad operative who was killed in an IAF airstrike early Wednesday morning was responsible for transfer of funds used in last Thursday's attacks.

The operative was identified as 34-year-old Ismael al-Asmar.

Security officials said that the decision was made to target al-Asmar due to intelligence that he was planning to initiate another attack from Sinai in the coming days.

Al-Asmar was targeted while he was in a vehicle in the western part of Rafah in the Gaza Strip. One additional person was wounded.

Later on Wednesday morning, two mortar shells fired from Gaza exploded in the Eshkol Regional Council, causing light damage but no injuries.

IAF aircraft targeted two militants in seperate locations on Wednesday in the northern Gaza who had launched projectiles at Israel shortly before, the IDF said in a statement.

A Egyptian woman was lightly wounded on Wednesday by a rocket fired from Gaza into the Sinai town of Rafah on Wednesday, Egypt's state news agency MENA reported.

Egyptian security forces are reportedly searching the border region for the people connected to last Thursday's terrorist attacks.

According to a report in Egypt's al-Shorouk newspaper, Egyptian forces are also mapping the tunnels underneath the Gaza border and intend to destroy them.


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