Israel’s senior commanders and political leaders, including Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, were not consulted before a military strike killed three sons of Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh in Gaza, Israeli media reported Thursday.

Neither Netanyahu nor Defense Minister Yoav Gallant had been told in advance of the airstrike, which was coordinated by the Israel Defense Forces and the Shin Bet intelligence service, Walla news agency reported, citing senior Israeli officials. 

The report said Amir, Mohammad and Hazem Haniyey were targeted as fighters, not because they were sons of the Hamas leader. Ismail Haniyeh, who is originally from Shati, has 13 children and has been living in exile in Qatar. The Israeli military has not commented on reports that four of Haniyeh’s grandchildren were also killed.

3 OF HAMAS LEADER ISMAIL HANIYEH’S ‘TERRORIST’ SONS KILLED BY ISRAELI AIRSTRIKE, IDF SAYS

Benjamin Netanyahu

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convenes the weekly cabinet meeting at the Defense Ministry in Tel Aviv, Israel, Jan. 7, 2024. (Reuters/Ronen Zvulun/Pool)

Hamas’ Al-Aqsa TV station reported the deaths on Thursday, noting that the airstrike hit near the Shati refugee camp in Gaza City, per The Associated Press.

Al-Aqsa TV station aired footage of Haniyeh purportedly receiving the news of the deaths while visiting wounded Palestinians who had been transported to a hospital in Doha. As an aide received the news on his phone, Haniyeh nodded, looked down at the ground and slowly walked out of the room. 

IRAN’S LEADER SAYS 4 THREATENING WORDS TO ISRAEL, BLASTS THE US AND WEST FOR ‘DISASTER’ IN GAZA 

Hamas Supreme Leader reportedly learns of sons' deaths

Video purported to show Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh learning that three of his sons were killed in an Israeli airstrike. The Israeli Defense Forces confirmed the strike Wednesday, April 10, 2024. (Al Aqsa TV via APTN)

The killing of Haniyeh’s relatives has added a potential complication to negotiations aimed at securing a halt in the fighting in Gaza in exchange for the return of the 133 Israeli hostages still believed to be held in the besieged enclave.

Haniyeh said Hamas had “clear and specific” demands for agreeing to any pause in the fighting.

DEMOCRAT SENATORS VOICE CONCERNS OVER ISRAEL WAR STATUS AS BIDEN ATTEMPTS ‘CHALLENGING’ BALANCE WITH PROGRESSIVES 

Israeli airstrike in Gaza Strip

Smoke and flames rise following an Israeli airstrike in Gaza Strip on Nov. 2, 2023. (Ali Jadallah/Anadolu)

“The enemy will be delusional if it thinks that targeting my sons, at the climax of the negotiations and before the movement sends its response, will push Hamas to change its position,” Haniyeh said on Wednesday.

Hamas is demanding an immediate end to the Israeli offensive, a withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza and permission for displaced Palestinians to return to their homes.

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The strike that killed Haniyeh’s sons happened after Iran’s leader on Wednesday threatened to take action against Israel during a prayer ceremony. He also criticized the U.S. and the West for their involvement amid tensions in the region. 

Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowed Israel “will be punished” as he spoke at a prayer ceremony celebrating the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Iran has promised retribution for a reported Israeli airstrike that demolished Iran’s consulate in Syria last month.

Netanyahu on Thursday said Israel is prepared to respond “defensively and offensively” to any Iranian strike.

“We are in challenging times. We are in the midst of the war in Gaza, which is continuing at full force, even as we are continuing our relentless efforts to return our hostages, the prime minister said during a visit to Tel Nof Air Base. 

“However, we are also prepared for scenarios involving challenges in other sectors. We have determined a simple rule: Whoever harms us, we will harm them. We are prepared to meet all of the security needs of the State of Israel, both defensively and offensively.” 

Fox News Digital’s Greg Norman and Reuters contributed to this report.

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