Ahmad Ibrahim al-Sayyid al-Naggar

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Ahmad Ibrahim al-Sayyid al-Naggar was a member of Egyptian Islamic Jihad. The Jewish lobby group ADL dubbed him the "propaganda chief" of the militant organisation.[1] He was one of 14 people subjected to extraordinary rendition by the CIA prior to the 2001 declaration of a War on Terror.[2]


His permanent address was on al-Shaikh al-Husari street in Giza.[4]

In 1991, he was sentenced in absentia to three years imprisonment in the al-Jihad case arising from the assassination of Anwar Sadat.[3] However, he fled the country in 1993 when Adil al-Sudani got him a false passport in the name of Abdel Raheem Mohammed Hussein and bought him an October 18 ferry ticket from Nuwaiba to Jordan, and told him to wait for a phone call at the Jordan River Hotel in Amman.[5] When he arrived the next day, he received a call from Mahmud al-Deeb who told him to book a flight four days later to Sanaa, Yemen to meet with him. When al-Naggar arrived, he was greeted by Ayman al-Zawahiri and his brother Muhammad al-Zawahiri, Ahmad Salamah Mabruk, Morgan Salem and Thirwat Shehata who assured him that al-Jihad took care of its own, and they were glad to see him safe.[5]

In 1994, he was asked to travel to Sudan, and was subsequently met by al-Zawahiri, who asked him to oversee civil organisation of al-Jihad.[4]

In October of the following year, Zawahiri asked him to instead travel to Yemen to oversee civil operations there; but three months later was told to travel with his fake passport in the name of Ahmed Rajab Mohammed, to take a job as a teacher with the Haramain charity in Tirana, Albania.[4] He also led the Centre for Islamic Heritage.[6]

Following the 1996 rise of the Taliban government in Afghanistan, al-Naggar tried to link al-Jihad to the new government, noting their shared ideals.[3]

Capture, trials, execution[edit]

He was sentenced in death in absentia in an Egyptian military court on October 15, 1997, for the crime of membership in al-Jihad, and possession of weapons.[4][8][9] He was ostensibly linked to the 1995 plot to blow up the Khan el-Khalili market, as well as the assassination of Speaker of Parliament Rifaat el-Mahgoub in October 1990.[6][10][11] The trial was condemned as "unfair" by Amnesty International.[8]

In 1998, Bary asked al-Naggar to claim asylum in the United Kingdom, so he could help convince Hani Sibai to support the Algerian GIA in media communiques.[12]

He was arrested on July 2, 1998, as he stepped off the plane in Cairo, having been deported from Albania with the help of the CIA.[4] His wife was also arrested.

He was tried in the 1999 Returnees from Albania trial at which he was defended by Montasser el-Zayat. He was tortured for nine months; locked in a room with water up to his knees 24 hours a day. When taken to SSI headquarters in Lazughli Square and questioned by Captain Yasir Azzulddin,[4] his hands and feet were tied, as interrogators applied electric shocks to his nipples and penis.[9] Under torture, al-Naggar admitted that al-Jihad had acquired anthrax from an unnamed East Asian country for $3,695.[13] He later claimed his confessions were only a result of this torture. He was sentenced to 25 years' imprisonment.[9] In November, he was transferred to Tora prison, where Amnesty noted he was at less risk of torture or sudden execution.[14]

Together with the other three Returnees brought from Tirana, his capture and torture were listed as the main reasons for the 1998 United States embassy bombings.[10]

He was hanged on February 23, 2000, at al-Isti’naf prison, due to the earlier death sentence levied against him.[8][9]


  1. ^ Anti-Defamation League, US EMbassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania, Autumn 1998
  2. ^ Mother Jones, Disappearing Act: Rendition by the Numbers Archived 2009-12-21 at WebCite, March 3, 2008
  3. ^ a b c al-Zayat, Montasser, "The Road to al-Qaeda", 2002
  4. ^ a b c d e f Bergen, Peter. "The Osama bin Laden I Know", 2006
  5. ^ a b El-Zayyat, Montasser, "The Road to al-Qaeda", 2004. tr. by Ahmed Fakry
  6. ^ a b al-Ahram, Military trial for bombing suspects, November 5–11, 1998
  7. ^ Sachs, Susan. New York Times, "An Investigation in Egypt Illustrates Al Qaeda's Web", November 21, 2001
  8. ^ a b c Amnesty International, Ahmed Ibrahim al-Naggar, February 29, 2000
  9. ^ a b c d Human Rights Watch, Black Hole: The 1995 and 1998 Renditions
  10. ^ a b Victoria Advocate, Bombings connect to mysterious arrests, August 13, 1998
  11. ^ 24ur.com, Islamski skrajneži napovedali nove protiameriške napade, February 4, 1999
  12. ^ Pargeter, Alison. "The New Frontiers of Jihad", p. 54
  13. ^ Begley, Sharon. Newsweek, "The history of weaponized anthrax suggests that investigators have no shortage of suspects in the new bio-attacks"
  14. ^ Amnesty International, Further information, November 12, 1998