Mon Apr 10, 2017 01:29PM
In this file photo, foreigners wait to cross to Egypt at the Israeli side of Taba border crossing near the Red Sea resort of Eilat. (Photo by AP)
In this file photo, foreigners wait to cross to Egypt at the Israeli side of Taba border crossing near the Red Sea resort of Eilat. (Photo by AP)

Israeli authorities have closed Taba border crossing with Egypt in the wake of warnings and intelligence reports that militants would launch an “imminent” attack in the North African country's restive Sinai Peninsula, a popular destination for many Israeli tourists.

Israel's Transportation and Intelligence Minister Yisrael Katz said in a statement on Monday that there were indications that militants would potentially target tourists there.

Israeli holidaymakers in Sinai would be allowed to return, but those seeking to enter through Taba crossing would not be permitted in.

The closure came only hours before the start of the week-long Jewish Passover holiday at sundown.

Shortly afterwards, the Israeli army announced in a statement that a rocket fired from Sinai had hit a greenhouse in the Eshkol regional council.

The projectile reportedly did not cause any casualties. Daesh later claimed responsibility for the rocket fired into southern Israeli-occupied Palestinian territories.

The Sinai Peninsula has been under a state of emergency since October 2014, when a massive terrorist attack claimed the lives of 33 Egyptian soldiers.

Over the past years, Takfiri militants have been carrying out anti-government activities and fatal attacks, taking advantage of the turmoil caused in Egypt after former president Mohamed Morsi was ousted by the military in July 2013. 

Members of the Velayat Sinai militant group, formerly known as Ansar Beit al-Maqdis, have claimed responsibility for most of the assaults, mainly targeting the army and police.

In November 2014, the militants pledged allegiance to the Daesh terror outfit, which is mainly operating inside Iraq and Syria.