Egyptian Islamic Jihad

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Egyptian Islamic Jihad was founded in the 1970s as a violent Islamist opposition to secular government. It paralleled Jamaat al-Islamiyya in that many of its members belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood but regarded it as too moderate, and that many of the EIJ members eventually affiliated with al-Qaeda and other organizations with a scope beyond Egypt. It is not known to have carried out an operation in Egypt since 1993. In general, however, it appears to be dormant or have been superseded. It was founded by Abd al-Qadir bin ‘Abd al-‘Aziz, who was replaced by Ayman al-Zawahiri; the two have accused one another of plagiarism.

One of its leaders, who has been a source on Osama bin Laden's thinking, is Ahmed Ibrahim al-Sayed al-Naggar.[1]

During its active life, it was involved in the

  • Participation, in the 1980s, in the civil wars in Afghanistan and Iraq
  • 1981 assassination of President Anwar Sadat in 1981;
  • 1993 assassination attempts on Egyptian Prime Minister Atef Sedky and Interior Minister Hassan al-Alfi;
  • 1995 bombing of the Egyptian embassy in Islamabad, Pakistan;
  • 1995 failed assassination attempt on Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in 1995;
  • 1998 failed bombing attempt on the U.S. embassy in Albania

They have been reported to have provided documents, communication and funds to al-Qaeda in the 1998 bombings of U.S. Embassies in Africa.[2]


  1. Peter L. Bergen (2006), The Osama bin Laden I Know: An Oral History of al Qaeda's Leader, Free Press, ISBN 0743278917, pp. 198-199
  2. Susan Sachs (November 21, 2001), "A Nation Challenged: Bin Laden's Allies; An Investigation in Egypt Illustrates Al Qaeda's Web", New York Times