The IDF has decided to deploy radar systems along the border with Egypt to detect and warn of rocket attacks.
The radar systems will be similar to those that are deployed along Israel’s border with the Gaza Strip and Lebanon and are used to detect the launching of rockets into Israel and assist in determining their trajectory as well as the projected target.
The information produced by the radar is then transmitted to the Home Front Command – which is responsible for activating early warning systems like air sirens – to alert residents of the areas about to be hit.
The decision to deploy the radar systems along the border comes amid concern that terror groups operating in Sinai will escalate their rocket attacks against Israel. The IDF believes that groups based in Gaza are operating freely in Sinai and in some cases even activate local Beduin to carry out attacks on their behalf.
Earlier this month, two 122- mm. Katyusha rockets were fired from Sinai and landed near Mitzpe Ramon and Uvda.
In April, a Grad-model Katyusha struck Eilat.
Israel has called on the Egyptian government to increase its efforts to regain control over Sinai and to root out terror groups which operate there. However, predictions are that this will not happen, particularly following the announcement on Sunday that Mohamed Morsy of the Muslim Brotherhood was elected president.
“The more significant problem is what’s happening in Sinai, where terror bases are being established and we expect the Egyptians to restore their sovereignty there,” IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz said last Tuesday.
Under the current setup within the military, the Israel Air Force is responsible for operating the radars and detecting incoming aerial threats like missiles, and the Home Front Command is responsible for activating early warning systems like air raid sirens.
The two branches currently operate individual commandand- control centers in the Kirya military headquarters in Tel Aviv but there are plans to combine the two as part of an effort to increase coordination and shorten the time it takes from detection until sirens are sounded.