Invasion of Waddan

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Invasion of Waddan or Abwa
Part of the Muslim-Quraish Wars
Date Safar, 624 , 2 AH
Location Al-Abwa
  • Abu Sufyan ibn Harb escapes
  • Successful Caravan Raid of Banu Dahrma tribe
  • Succeeded in winning Banu Dharma as allies
  • Treaty with Banu Darmha tribe [1]
Muslims of Medina Quraysh of Mecca
Commanders and leaders
Hamza ibn ‘Abd al-Muttalib
Abu Ubaydah
Abu Sufyan ibn Harb
Amr Bin Makhshi Al Dhamri
(60 commanded by Muhammad)200+ [1] Unknown
Casualties and losses
0 killed Unknown (Injuries Only)
0 captured

Invasion of al-Abwa or Waddan,[2] also known as the Battle of Waddan or Battle of Abwa, was the first battle involving Muslim forces and Muhammad. Some caravan raids took place from 623 to 624, which led to the Battle of Badr. This battle is called a Ghazawat, i.e. battles in which Muhhamad participated. Most of the battles which took place in Waddan Abwa were small skirmishes: sometimes only arrows were fired and no casualties took place; they were mainly a prelude to a bigger war.[1]


After Muhammad and his followers had migrated to Medina in 622, the Quraysh confiscated the belongings they had left behind. From Medina, the Muslims attacked several of the Quraysh's caravans traveling from Syria to Mecca. In 624, Abu Sufyan was the leader of one caravan, and as a Muslim force moved to intercept him, he called for help from the Quraysh. This resulted in the Battle of Badr, which ended in a Muslim victory. However, Abu Sufyan managed to bring his caravan home to Mecca. The death of most Quraysh leaders in the battle left him the leader of Mecca.[3]

According to the Persian Muslim scholar Muḥammad ibn Khāvandshāh, the purpose of this raid was to plunder Abu Sufyan's caravan and that some companions of Muhammad stayed behind as they didn't they would need to fight because they believed plunder was the objective and not war.[4]

Abu Sufyan later converted to Islam and became a Sahaba after Muhamnad showed him mercy when Mecca was captured. In a famous hadith Abu Sufyan said:

This is my eye, it has been injured for the sake of Allah and Islam.[5]

Banu Darhma caravan raid[edit]

The Caravan of Al Dhamri was raided instead. Negotiations began and the two leaders signed a treaty with Banu Damrah.[3]

According to Muslim scholar Muhammad al-Zurqani, the provisions of the pact/treaty go as follows :

"This document is from Muhammad, the messenger of Allah, concerning the Banu Darmah. In which he [Muhammad] established them safety and security in their wealth and lives. They can expect support from the Muslims, unless they oppose the religion of Allah. They are also expected to respond positively if the prophet sought their help"[2]

The treaty meant that both parties were forbidden from raiding each other, to join hostile concentrations against each other and to support each other's enemies. William Montgomery Watt, saw this as a deliberate attempt by Muhammad to provoke the Meccan's.[6]

Islamic primary sources[edit]

This incident is mentioned in Ibn Hisham & Ibn Ishaq [7] and also in the Sunni Hadith collection Sahih al-Bukhari as follows:

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Haykal, Husayn (1976), The Life of Muhammad, Islamic Book Trust, p. 217, ISBN 978-983-9154-17-7 
  2. ^ a b Mubarakpuri, Saifur Rahman Al (2005), The sealed nectar: biography of the Noble Prophet, Darussalam Publications, p. 244, ISBN 978-9960-899-55-8 
  3. ^ a b Haykal, Husayn (1976), The Life of Muhammad, Islamic Book Trust, pp. 217–218, ISBN 978-983-9154-17-7 
  4. ^ Muḥammad ibn Khāvandshāh Mīr Khvānd (1893), The Rauzat-us-safa: v. 1-2. The life of Muhammad the apostle of Allah, p. 282, Royal Asiatic Society
  5. ^
  6. ^ Watt, W. Montgomery (1956). Muhammad at Medina. Oxford University Press. p. 4. ISBN 978-0-19-577307-1.  (free online)
  7. ^ Ibn Hisham , Ibn Ishaq, Alfred Guillaume (translator) (1998). The life of Muhammad: a translation of Isḥāq's Sīrat rasūl Allāh. Oxford University Press. p. 345.