Gaza militant killed in air strike

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The Independent Online

Violence along the Gaza-Israel border intensified yesterday, with Israeli air strikes on militant targets in response to renewed rocket fire.

Israeli aircraft killed a militant from Gaza's Islamic Jihad faction before dawn yesterday, Hamas security officials said, and strikes later targeted two militants who had fired two mortars at Israel shortly before.

The Israeli military said the militant, Ismail al-Asmar, had smuggled weapons into Gaza and was involved in militant activity in Egypt's Sinai peninsula, near Israel's southern border.

A militant incursion into Israel from Sinai last week killed eight Israelis. That was followed by Palestinian rocket attacks and Israeli air strikes that have not stopped despite a cease-fire deal that was reached on Sunday.

Israeli has sent military reinforcements to the area, local media reported. A music festival in the city of Ashkelon was also cancelled, with the military warning that large gatherings could pose a security risk.