( dpa ) - Egyptian security forces in full riot gear deployed along Egypt's border with the Gaza Strip Friday morning and began preventing Palestinians from crossing over freely, witnesses said.
After two full days of the border being breached, the guards, in blue uniforms, helmets and armed with clubs, allowed scores of Gazans carrying sacks and boxes with goods back into the Strip, but stopped those seeking to enter Egypt, the witnesses said.
Several youths threw stones at the Egyptian guards, but policemen of the radical Islamic Hamas movement ruling Gaza intervened and chased them away.
Meanwhile two Israeli airstrikes in the southern Gaza Strip town of Rafah early Friday killed four militants of the radical Islamic Hamas movement, Palestinian security officials said. A fifth Palestinian later died of his wounds.
An Israeli military spokeswoman confirmed the airstrikes on the cars carrying members of Hamas' armed wing, the al-Qassam Brigades, adding a senior commander she identified as Mohammed Abu Hard who was involved in rocket attacks at Israel was among them.
Palestinian militants earlier attacked an Israeli border police checkpoint and a Jewish settlement in and near Jerusalem late Thursday.
A border policeman was killed and a policewoman was moderately injured when gunmen opened fire from short range at the checkpoint in East Jerusalem's Shu'afat refugee camp.
And two Palestinian attackers were killed after infiltrating a religious school in the Kfar Etzion settlement, south of Jerusalem. They were overpowered and shot after stabbing and injuring two local security guards.
Friday's airstrikes come after two days of chaos in Gaza, in which Hamas militants blew up a wall on the Strip's southern border, allowing hundreds of thousands of Gazans to cross back and forth freely into Egypt to buy scarce supplies.
Israel declared a high alert along its own southern border, amid fears militants from Gaza might attempt to infiltrate the country from Egypt, whose border with Israel is less heavily secured than Gaza's.
A militant offshoot of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah movement claimed responsibility for the shooting attack in Shu'afat.
Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert agreed to meet Sunday to debate the crisis in Gaza, Israel Radio reported.
Abbas demands Israel ease its tight blockade of the Strip, which had triggered the storming of the Gaza-Egypt border early Wednesday.
Israel, however, has said it will not do so unless daily rocket attacks at its southern towns and villages end. Militants fired nine such rockets and mortar shells from Gaza Thursday, the army said.
Responding to a surge in the rocket attacks, Israel Friday last week completely sealed its border crossings with Gaza. It then opened two of its border crossings Tuesday, allowing in humanitarian aid and diesel for Gaza's only local power plant and for hospital generators. But it announced a new policy, under which the entry of humanitarian aid and fuel would be down to the bare minimum necessary to avoid a humanitarian crisis.
The goal, Israel said, it to step up the pressure on militants firing the rockets. But human rights groups have condemned the move as collective punishment.
Friday, meanwhile, was the second anniversary since Hamas unexpected victory over Abbas' secular Fatah in parliamentary elections, which has since led to a relentless power-struggle that culminated in the radical Islamic movement's Gaza take-over in June.