Siddhesh Joshi (Editor)

Juhayman al Otaybi

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Sunni Islam


Years of service

Umm al-Qura University

Juhayman al-Otaybi

Juhayman al-Otaybi with a sad face, curly hair, a mustache, and a thick beard.

16 September 1936 (
Al-Qassim Province, Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia(1955–1973)

Leader of Alsalfih almohtsbah

January 9, 1980, Saudi Arabia

Muhammad ibn Sayf al-Otaybi

Similar People
Khalid of Saudi Arabia, Fahd of Saudi Arabia, Sultan bin Abdulaziz, Turki bin Faisal Al Saud

Battles and wars
Grand Mosque seizure

The meccan rebellion the story of juhayman al utaybi revisited

Juhayman ibn Muhammad ibn Sayf al-Otaybi (Arabic: جهيمان بن محمد بن سيف العتيبي‎‎ ‎16 September 1936 – 9 January 1980) was a Saudi religious activist and militant who in 1979 led the Grand Mosque seizure of the Masjid al Haram in Mecca, Islam's holiest site, to protest against the Saudi monarchy and the House of Saud.


Juhayman al-Otaybi on the back with a sad face, curly hair, a mustache, and a thick beard. In the front, a bald man wearing eyeglasses, with a beard and wearing black long sleeves.

Juhayman said that his justification for the siege was that the House of Saud had lost its legitimacy through corruption and imitation of the West, an echo of his father's charge in 1921 against former Saudi king Ibn Saud. Unlike earlier anti-monarchist dissidents in the kingdom, Juhayman attacked the wahhabi ulama for failing to protest against policies that (he believed) betrayed Islam, and accused them of accepting the rule of an infidel state and offering loyalty to corrupt rulers in "exchange for honours and riches."

Juhayman al-Otaybi was featured on Youtube by the My Media 1 Youtube channel.

On 20 November 1979, the first day of the Islamic year 1400, the Masjid al-Haram was seized by a well-organized group of 400 to 500 men under al-Otaybi's leadership. A siege lasted more than two weeks before Saudi Special Forces broke into the Mosque. Pakistan's Special Services Group (SSG) also took part in the operation. French Special Forces provided a special tear gas called CB which prevents aggressiveness and slows down breathing. al-Otaybi was executed by the Saudi authorities, in public, on 9 January 1980, in Mecca.

Juhayman al otaybi


Otaybi was born in al-Sajir, Al-Qassim Province, a settlement established by King Abdulaziz to house Ikhwan bedouin tribesmen who had fought for him. This settlement (known as a hijra) was populated by members of Otaybi's tribe, the 'Utaybah tribe, one of the most pre-eminent tribes of the Najd region. Many of Otaybi's relatives participated in the Battle of Sabilla during the Ikhwan uprising against King Abdulaziz, including his father and grandfather, Sultan bin Bajad Al-Otaibi. Otaybi grew up aware of the battle and of how, in their eyes, the Saudi monarchs had betrayed the original religious principles of the Saudi state. He finished school without fluent writing ability, but he loved to read religious texts.

He served in the Saudi Arabian National Guard from 1955 to 1973. He was thin and stood 6' 1½" (187 cm) according to his friends in the Saudi Arabian National Guard.


Then he moved to Medina . It is when he met with Muhammad ibn Abdullah Al Qahtani.

Otaybi, upon moving to Medina, joined the local chapter of a Salafi group called Al-Jamaa Al-Salafiya Al-Muhtasiba (The Salafi Group That Commands Right and Forbids Wrong). Abd al-Aziz ibn Baz. Ibn Baz used his religious stature to arrange fundraising for the group, and Otaybi earned money by buying, repairing and re-selling cars from city auctions.

Otaybi lived in a "makeshift compound" about a half hour's walk to the Prophet's Mosque, and his followers stayed in a nearby dirt-floored hostel called Bayt al-Ikhwan ("House of the Brothers"). Otaybi and his devotees obeyed an austere and simple lifestyle, searching the Quran and Hadith for scriptural evidence of what was permissible not only for their beliefs but in their day-to-day lives. Otaybi was perturbed by the encroachment of Western beliefs and Bid‘ah (بدعة, innovation) in Saudi society to the detriment of (what he believed to be) true Islam. He opposed the integration of women into the workforce, television, the immodest shorts worn by football players during matches, and Saudi currency with an image of the King on it.

By 1977, ibn Baz had departed to Riyadh and Otaybi became the leader of a faction of young recruits that developed their own—sometimes unorthodox—religious doctrines. When older members of the Jamaa travelled to Medina to confront Otaybi about these developments, the two factions split from each other. Otaybi attacked the elder sheikhs as government sellouts and called his new group al-Ikhwan.

In the late 1970s, he moved to Riyadh, where he drew the attention of the Saudi security forces. He and approximately 100 of his followers were arrested in the summer of 1978 for demonstrating against the monarchy, but were released after ibn Baz questioned them and pronounced them harmless.[1]

He married both the daughter of Prince Sajer Al Mohaya and the sister of Muhammad ibn Abdullah Al Qahtani.

His doctrines are said to have included:

  1. The imperative to emulate the Prophet's example—revelation, propagation, and military takeover.
  2. The necessity for the Muslims to overthrow their present corrupt rulers who are forced upon them and lack Islamic attributes since the Quran recognizes no king or dynasty.
  3. The requirements for legitimate rulership are devotion to Islam and its practice, rulership by the Holy Book and not by repression, Qurayshi tribal roots, and election by the Muslim believers.
  4. The duty to base the Islamic faith on the Quran and the sunnah and not on the equivocal interpretations (taqlid) of the ulama and on their "incorrect" teachings in the schools and universities.
  5. The necessity to isolate oneself from the sociopolitical system by refusing to accept any official positions.
  6. The advent of the mahdi from the lineage of the Prophet through Husayn ibn Ali to remove the existing injustices and bring equity and peace to the faithful.
  7. The duty to reject all worshipers of the partners of God (shirk), including worshipers of Sayyidina Ali, Hazrat Fatimah and the Holy Prophet Muhammad, the Khawarij, and even music.
  8. The duty to establish a puritanical Islamic community which protects Islam from unbelievers and does not court foreigners.

Works cited

  • Abir, Mordechai (1988). Saudi Arabia in the Oil Era: Regime and Elites Conflict and Collaboration. Boulder, CO: Westview Press. ISBN 0-8133-0643-4. 
  • Dekmejian, R. Hrair (1985). Islam in Revolution: Fundamentalism in the Arab World. Syracuse, NY: Syracuse University Press. ISBN 0-8156-2329-1. 
  • Graham, Douglas F.; Peter W. Wilson (1994). Saudi Arabia: The Coming Storm. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe. ISBN 1-56324-394-6. 
  • Lacroix, S., & Holoch, G. (2011). Awakening Islam: The Politics of Religious Dissent in Contemporary Saudi Arabia. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press.
  • Krämer, Gudrun (2000). "Good Counsel to the King: The Islamist Opposition in Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Morocco". In Joseph Kostiner. Middle East Monarchies: The Challenge of Modernity. Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner. pp. 257–287. ISBN 1-55587-862-8. 
  • Lacey, Robert (1981). The Kingdom. New York, NY: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich. ISBN 0-15-147260-2. 
  • Lacey, Robert (2009-10-15). Inside the Kingdom: Kings, Clerics, Modernists, Terrorists, and the Struggle for Saudi Arabia. Penguin Group US. ISBN 9781101140734. 
  • Lunn, John (2002). "Saudi Arabia: History". The Middle East and North Africa 2003 (49 ed.). Routledge. ISBN 978-1-85743-132-2. 
  • Quandt, William B. (1981). Saudi Arabia in the 1980s: Foreign Policy, Security, and Oil. Washington, D.C.: Brookings Institution. ISBN 0-8157-7286-6. 
  • Ruthven, Malise (2000). Islam in the World. Oxford: Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-513841-4. 
  • Trofimov, Yaroslav (2007). The Siege of Mecca: The Forgotten Uprising in Islam's Holiest Shrine and the Birth of Al Qaeda. New York: Doubleday. ISBN 978-0-385-51925-0. 
  • References

    Juhayman al-Otaybi Wikipedia

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