Success stories of Palestinian achievers from all over the world

Abdullah Azzam

Personal Info

  • Country of residence: Palestine
  • Gender: Male
  • Born in: 1941
  • Age: 71
  • Curriculum vitae :


Born in Silat Al-Hartiyeh near Jenin in 1941; received elementary and secondary education in his village, then continued his education at the agricultural Khadori College near Tulkarem, where he obtained a Diploma; worked as a teacher in Jordan; then went to Syria and studied Islamic Law at Damascus University, graduating with a BA in 1966; immigrated to Jordan after the War of 1967, where he joined the Muslim Brotherhood training camps in 1968; enrolled at Cairo’s Al-Azhar University, earning an MA in Islamic Law in 1969; worked as lecturer at the University of Jordan in Amman in 1970; was awarded a scholarship to Al-Azhar University in Cairo in 1971 and continued his studies in Islamic Law, receiving a PhD in Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence in 1973; moved to Amman and worked as a teacher of Shari’a in higher education institutions in Jordan specializing in holy war (jihad); traveled to Saudi Arabia, where he worked as teacher at the King Abdul-Aziz University in Jeddah (where one of his students was Usama Bin Laden); while in Saudi Arabia, became convinced that only by means of an organized military force would the Ummah (Islamic nation) emerge victorious; in 1979, when the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan, issued a Fatwa (Defense of the Muslim Lands, the First Obligation after Faith) declaring that both the Afghan and Palestinian struggles were jihads in which killing kuffar (unbelievers) was fard ayn (a personal obligation) for all Muslims; was among the first Arabs to join the Afghani mujahideen in their Jihad against the Soviet forces in the early 1980s; immigrated with his family to Pakistan in order to coordinate support for the Afghani resistance, and founded the Mujahideen Services Bureau in Peshawar, which offered assistance to the mujahideen, incl. receiving and training of volunteers; also worked as a lecturer at the International Islamic University in Islamabad; traveled throughout the Arab world, calling on Muslims to rally to the defense of their religion and lands and to join the fighting in Afghanistan; spent time in the US in the mid-1980s, then returned to Afghanistan; published books and articles on Jihad and other Islamic affairs, incl. Join the Caravan and Defense of Muslim Lands; was assassinated, along with two of his sons, by a bomb planted by unknown assailants along a route he regularly traveled on 24 Nov. 1989 in Peshawar; is remembered as the “Godfather of Jihad” for his role in the global development of militant Islam (incl. Al-Qaida), and widely considered as Bin Laden’s spiritual mentor.


Achievements and Awards

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