Hamas named the men as Mohammed Abu Shammala, Raed al-Attar and Mohammed Barhoum and said they were killed in the bombing of a house in Rafah.
The pre-dawn strike levelled a four-storey house in a densely populated neighbourhood, killing six people, including the three Hamas leaders.
The Israeli military and Shin Bet, the internal security service, confirmed that two of the men had been targeted. The trio had played a key role in expanding Hamas’ military capabilities in recent years, including digging covert tunnels leading to Israel, training fighters and smuggling weapons to Gaza, Israel said.
A Palestinian man inspects the wreckage of a car, which witnesses said was hit by the Israeli air strike that killed three senior Hamas military commanders in Rafah(Reuters)
As well as the Hamas commanders, Palestinian medics reported 19 other deaths on Thursday, including three children.
“Three children, aged 7, 8 and 11, were killed in an Israeli strike in eastern Gaza City,” said a Gaza Health Ministry spokesman.
Gaza militants resumed rocket fire on Israel as talks broke down on Tuesday, even before the formal end of a six-day truce at midnight that day.
Since then, Hamas and other groups have fired dozens more rockets, and Israeli aircraft have struck dozens of targets in Gaza, a sign that prospects for a resumption of the Cairo talks are slim.
- Israeli Air Strikes Kill Three Senior Hamas Commanders
- Gaza Strip: Israel Defence Forces Prepares for Ground Invasion Following Ceasefire Breakdown
- Israel-Gaza Ceasefire Photos: Palestinians Return to Their Destroyed Homes
- Gaza Crisis Photos: Israeli Shelling Resumes After Hamas Ceasefire Crumbles
- Gaza Crisis Pictures: Families Flee as Israel Reduces Symbols of Hamas Power to Rubble