GAZA STRIP - The Israeli Navy thwarted a maritime terror attack early Monday morning.
Members of the elite Shayetet 13 unit spotted five armed Palestinians in wetsuits sailing north toward the Israeli coast about 4:30 a.m.
The Navy intercepted the cell in the Nahal Aza area, a fire fight ensued and four of the gunmen were killed.
The al-Aksa Martyrs' Brigades, the "armed wing" of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas' Fatah party, confirmed that four of its members were killed and a fifth was missing.
The IDF said the size of the terror cell, their weaponry and equipment indicated they had planned to carry out a major terror attack.
WAFA, the official PLO news agency, reported that the Israeli Navy "shot dead" four fishermen after sinking their boat, and "still Israeli gunboats [are] patrolling the sea off the shores of Gaza."
The Navy remains on high alert for Palestinian terror cells attempting to infiltrate Israel by sea.
IDF troops monitoring the border with Gaza thwart frequent attempts to plant bombs along the security barrier and build tunnels to facilitate infiltration.
A short time later, the IDF targeted a rocket-launching cell in northern Gaza, injuring one Palestinian.
In the last three weeks, Palestinians have fired more than 10 rockets and mortar shells on southern Israel.