Monday, February 15, 2010

AL- Mokhtar

(1862 - September 16, 1931), of the Mnifa tribe, was born in the small village of Janzour, near Tobruk in eastern Barqa (Cyrenaica). He organized and, for nearly twenty years from 1912, led native resistance to Italian control of Libya. The Italians captured and hanged him in 1931.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Early life

Omar Mukhtar's father died when he was sixteen years old, and Hussein El Gariani, uncle of Sharif El Gariani, took care of him afterward. He was taught the Qu'ran by Abd Akader Bodia who was teacher of Zawiat Janzour . Before the Italian invasion, Mukhtar was a teacher of the Qur'an at Zawiat al Qusour in Cyrenaica.

Capture and execution

Mukhtar’s struggle of nearly twenty years came to an end on September 11, 1931, when he was wounded in battle, then captured by the Italian army. The Italians treated the native leader hero as a prize catch. His resilience had an impact on his jailers, who later remarked upon his steadfastness. His interrogators stated that Mukhtar recited verses of peace from the Qur'an.

In three days, Mukhtar was tried, convicted, and, on September 14, 1931, sentenced to be hanged publicly (historians and scholars have questioned whether his trial was fair or impartial). When asked if he wished to say any last words, Mukhtar replied with a Qur'anic phrase: "We are Allah's -properties-, and to Allah we will return." On September 16, 1931, on the orders of the Italian court and with Italian hopes that Libyan resistance would die with him, Mukhtar was hanged before his followers in the concentration camp of Solluqon .