Jamaat ul-Fuqra

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Jamaat ul-Fuqraa' (alternatively Jamaat al-Fuqraa'; Arabic: جماعة الفقراء, "Community of the Impoverished") is an Islamic terrorist[1][2][3] organization of mostly African-American Muslims based in Pakistan and the United States. Some of the approximately 3,000 members have planned various acts of violence, often directed at rival factions.[4] Two Al-Fuqra members were convicted of conspiring to murder Rashad Khalifa in 1990,[5][6] and others are alleged to have assassinated Ahmadiyya leader Mozaffar Ahmad in 1983.[7][8]

It has been alleged that the groups Muslims of the Americas[4] and Quranic Open University[9] are the same as Jamaat ul-Fuqra, but this has not been confirmed. These allegations are primarily made by far-right organizations, many who believe the organizations are operating terrorist training camps in the United States.[10] Muslims of America denies any connection.[11]

The group is separatist, and was described by the National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism (MIPT) and a similar profile in the database of the South Asian Terror Portal as a cult.[12][13]


Although various members have been suspected[14] of assassinations and other acts of terror perpetrated in the 1980s and later,[15] and some members having been charged with conspiracy to commit first degree murder and other crimes,[16] The Jamaat itself is not listed as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the US or the EU.[17] It was included in a list of terrorist organizations in Patterns of Global Terrorism, a 1999 report by the U.S. State Department.[18]

The group has been banned in Pakistan.[19] Jamaat ul-Fuqra was also involved in the planned bombing of a Hindu temple in Toronto, Canada in 1991.[20]

Hotel Rajneesh bombing[edit]

On July 29, 1983, Stephen Paul Paster, a Jamaat member,[21] set off a bomb at the Hotel Rajneesh, a hotel in Portland, Oregon, United States. The hotel was owned by the Rajneesh religious group and featured the Zorba the Buddha nightclub.[9] Paster had several bombs and homemade napalm in his room, but one of the bombs went off in his hands while he was placing the bombs in the midst of the napalm.[22]

Paster was almost immediately arrested after the bombs went off, as he was one of only two people injured in the explosion, which took place at 1:23 a.m. After the hotel was evacuated two other explosions occurred at 3 a.m. Paster was charged with arson due to the fire which resulted from the explosions.[23] Paster posted $20,000 bail, then fled Oregon and was not apprehended until June 1984 in Englewood, Colorado. In November 1985, Paster was sentenced to 20 years in prison by a Multnomah County circuit judge.[22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Jamaat-ul-Fuqra, Terrorist Group of Pakistan". www.satp.org. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  2. ^ "Jama`at al-Fuqara'". Combating Terrorism Center at West Point. 2008-08-15. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  3. ^ "Jamaat ul-Fuqra". fas.org. Retrieved 2021-08-23.
  4. ^ a b "Another Holy War, Waged On American Soil". Newsweek. Feb 27, 1994. Archived from the original on October 16, 2012. Retrieved 2009-02-14.
  5. ^ Fainaru, Steve; Alia Ibrahim (2002-09-10). "Mysterious Trip to Flight 77 Cockpit; Suicide Pilot's Conversion to Radical Islam Remains Obscure". The Washington Post. p. A17.
  6. ^ Pankratz, Howard (2002-02-10). "Message spurred kidnap arrest Pakistani sent communique to Va". The Denver Post. p. A-08.
  7. ^ Boland, Mira L. (2002-03-18). "Sheikh Gilani's American Disciples". The Weekly Standard. p. 29. Retrieved 2009-02-14.
  8. ^ Berthiaume, Lee (2002-05-04). "The untold story of Hasanville's shadowy past: (Part 1)". Ottawa Citizen. CanWest Global Communications Corp. p. B1.
  9. ^ a b "Jamaat ul-Fuqra", South Asia Terrorism Portal
  10. ^ "A tranquil Muslim hamlet in the Catskills - until the attack plot". Reuters. 2015-06-01. Retrieved 2019-01-24.
  11. ^ October 02, Posted; October 02, 2017 at 09:01 AM | Updated; AM, 2017 at 09:00. "'Terrorist' label frustrates Islamberg, Muslim community in Upstate NY woods (photos)". NewYorkUpstate.com. Retrieved 2019-01-22.
  12. ^ "Group Profile: Al Fuqra". Archived from the original on December 25, 2007.
  13. ^ "Jamaat-ul-Fuqra, Terrorist Group of Pakistan". satp.org. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  14. ^ Dawson, Raechel (October 20, 2017). "'The Confession Tapes' Re-Opens the Triple-Murder Case of Sebastian Burns and Atif Rafay". seattleweekly. Retrieved 3 June 2018.
  15. ^ "American Black Muslims, Neo-Nazis, Foreign Muslim Extremists Join Forces". Southern Poverty Law Center. March 5, 2002.
  16. ^ "Information Regarding Colorado's Investigation and Prosecution of Members of Jamaat Ul Fuqra". Attorney General's Office, Colorado Department of Law. Archived from the original on February 15, 2008.
  17. ^ Department Of State. The Office of Electronic Information, Bureau of Public Affairs. "Jamaat ul-Fuqra Designated a Foreign Terrorist Organization? (Taken Question)". 2001-2009.state.gov. Retrieved 2019-01-22.
  18. ^ "Patterns of Global Terrorism: 1999" (PDF). United States Department of State. p. 120. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  19. ^ "A Junior al Qaeda... Right here at home: Meet al Fuqra". National Review. 31 January 2002. Archived from the original on May 6, 2011.
  20. ^ Tabor, Mary B. W. (1993-10-16). "A Trial in Canada Is Watched in U.S." The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2019-01-22.
  21. ^ Dean T. Olson (2012). Tactical Counterterrorism: The Law Enforcement Manual of Terrorism Prevention. Charles C. Thomas. p. 54. ISBN 978-0398087210.
  22. ^ a b "L.A. Resident Gets 20 Years for '83 Bombing of Hotel Rajneesh". Los Angeles Times. November 10, 1985. p. 20.
  23. ^ "Blasts Hurt 2 at Oregon Hotel; Victim is Arrested". New York Times. July 30, 1983. p. 1.28.

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