An assault near the Egypt border left three militants and an Israeli civilian dead. According to Israeli officials, gunmen open fired on a crew of construction workers as they were constructing a border fence in the Sinai desert region.
The attack sent three of the workers to the emergency room, where one later succumbed to his wounds. It is believed that at least three assailants were involved in the attack. Small arms gunfire was evident by the shell casings that riddled the floor; an improvised explosive device was detonated as well.
Soldiers were immediately dispatched to the area where they killed one of the gunmen. The second suspect was killed when an IED he was carrying detonated in his arms. The lifeless body of the third was later discovered at the scene. The civilian who died was identified as an Arab citizen of Israel.
Additional suspects are believed to have retreated back into Egypt.
The U.S. has released an official statement condemning the attacks and emphasized the importance for Israel to maintain a strong border security. Officials also cited the lack of political stability in Egypt as the cause for the violence, which magnified after the ouster of Hosni Mubarak.
In a separate incident, the Israeli Air Force launched an air strike in the northern section of the Gaza Strip that killed two Palestinian motorcyclists. Militants have confirmed the two dead as belonging to Islamic Jihad.
A second strike was carried out moments later that killed another two men and injured an additional three in Beit Hanoun. The air assault was confirmed by authorities who said the targets were a group of militants firing rocket propelled grenades across the border.
The government believes that the recent attacks show that militants are becoming more desperate and daring. The attacks also demonstrate a new degree of sophistication and complexity.