The Islamic Jihad terror group has recently began manufacturing rockets capable of reaching a 12.5-mile range, similar to the Grad rockets already in use by terror organizations in Gaza.
The new rockets are armed with a much deadlier warhead that carries double the amount of explosives compared to the regular Qassams, the IDF has recently learned.
According to army data, the terror groups have made use of the new rocket at least three times since the IDF's Warm Summer Operation in Gaza concluded.
Regular Qassam rockets carry about 11 lbs of explosives and have a 4.5 inch caliber, while the new ones can carry up to 22 lbs of explosives and have a 6.5 caliber. The new rockets are also more accurate and sophisticated and are made out of lighter materials.
The IDF also learned that the armed groups in Gaza have recently obtained two new types of Iranian-made 4.7 inch caliber mortar shells: The first is equipped with an auxiliary engine and can travel up to 6.2 miles, while the other can reach a distance of 3.7 miles.
'Terror groups will become more sophisticated'
According to security officials, the new rocket indicates that the terror groups in Gaza have increased their efforts to develop new weapons and that they have been receiving help from agents outside the Strip.
"The fact that they are able to produce their own long-range rockets…is disturbing and worrying," an army official said.
"There is no doubt that the smuggling of arms through the Philadelphi route and the breached border in the area are a significant weak spot and a major channel for terrorists. As time passes, the terror organizations will continue to become more established and sophisticated," he warned.