Ismail Haniyeh Fast Facts

Dismissed Palestinian prime minister and senior Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh speaks to security officers during his visit to the Security and Protection Forces' headquarters on July 3, 2008 in Gaza City, Gaza. Haniyeh sought to calm tensions with Egypt following a series of clashes between Egyptian Police and stone throwing protesters yesterday, in an effort to keep the Rafah crossing open.

CNN Editorial Research (CNN)Here is a look at Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas leader in Gaza.


Birth date: 1962
    Birth place: Shati refugee camp, near Gaza City
      Father: Father was a fisherman
        Marriage: Amal Haniyeh
        Children: 13
          Education: Islamic University of Gaza, 1987
          Religion: Muslim


          1987-1988 - Joins Hamas, during the first intifada.
          1988 - Imprisoned for six months.
          1989 - Sentenced to three years in prison.
          1992 - Released from prison and deported to Lebanon.
          December 1993 - Returns to Gaza and is appointed dean of the Islamic University.
          1997 - Becomes an assistant to Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, leader of Hamas.
          September 2003 - Haniyeh and Yassin are slightly injured when an Israeli airstrike targets them in Gaza City.
          April 2004 - After the deaths of Hamas's two previous leaders, Haniyeh is appointed part of a secret "collective leadership" with Mahmoud Zahhar and Said al-Siyam.
          January 26, 2006 - Hamas wins a landslide victory in the Palestinian legislative elections. Hamas wins 76 seats, and Fatah 43 seats in the 132-seat Palestinian Legislative Council, giving Hamas a majority.
          February 21, 2006 - Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas asks Haniyeh to assemble a government.
          March 29, 2006 - Sworn in as prime minister of the Palestinian Authority.
          December 14, 2006 - Haniyeh survives an assassination attempt at the border between Egypt and Gaza. However, one bodyguard is killed and one of Haniyeh's sons is wounded. Hamas blames Fatah for the attack.
          Early June 2007 - After a week of battles between Hamas and Fatah, Hamas seizes control of the Gaza Strip.
          June 14, 2007 - Abbas dissolves the government and dismisses Haniyeh as prime minister. Haniyeh rejects this and remains the de facto leader in the Gaza Strip.
          June 2009 - Former US President Jimmy Carter meets with Haniyeh in Gaza to discuss the Middle East peace process.
          June 13, 2010 - Haniyeh meets with Arab League Secretary Amr Moussa in Gaza. Moussa is the first senior Arab leader to visit Gaza since 2006.
          May 2, 2011 - Condemns the killing of Osama bin Laden in Pakistan, referring to him as a Muslim holy warrior and the victim of American oppression.
          October 23, 2012 - Meets with the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani, the first official head of state to visit since Egypt and Israel instituted a blockade in 2007.
          April 4, 2013 - Haniyeh is appointed deputy head of Hamas, and Khaled Meshaal is reelected chief.
          December 7, 2017 - In response to US President Donald Trump recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, Haniyeh calls for a Palestinian "infitada," or uprising to fight against "occupation" by Israelis.
            December 8, 2019 - Haniyeh arrives in Turkey, the first stop on a tour. It is his first international tour since he was elected in May 2017.
            January 6, 2020 - Speaks at the funeral of Qasem Soleimani, the leader of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps Quds Force, who was killed by a US Airstrike in Iraq on January 3. Haniyeh lauds Soleimani as a martyr.