Najwa Ghanhem

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Najwa bin Laden neé Ghanem (born c. 1958)[1] is a Syrian woman who was the first wife and first cousin of Osama bin Laden, being the daughter of his mother's brother. She is also known as Um Abdallah (mother of Abdallah).[2] She was born to Ibrahim and Nabeeha in Lattakia, Syria.[1] Osama married Najma in 1974 at the age of seventeen in Lattakia. Carmen Binladin who knew her in 1970s, described her as "meek, submissive, highly religious and constantly pregnant." She had travelled with Osama to Sudan and Afghanistan. According to Abu Jandal, she left Afghanistan before September 11 and did not return. In 2005, Hutaifa Azzam, son of Abdullah Azzam, stated that she was living in Damascus with her son Abdel Rahman.[2] She is the mother of Saad bin Laden, as well as at least 10 more children. She co-authored Growing Up bin Laden with her son Omar.[3] Her daughter Iman who was released by Iran in 2010 went to live with her in Syria.[4] According to a close family member in 2011, her mother had died of shock and grief after hearing of her son-in-law's death.[5]

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  1. ^ a b Najwa bin Laden, Omar bin Laden, Jean Sasson. Growing Up Bin Laden: Osama's Wife and Son Take Us Inside Their Secret World. p. 292. 
  2. ^ a b L. Bergen, Peter (2006-01-20). The Osama bin Laden I Know: An Oral History of al Qaeda's Leader. Simon & Schuster. p. 402. 
  3. ^ Andrew Lee Butters (27 October 2009) Growing Up bin Laden: Osama's Son Speaks Time. Accessed 24 December 2009.
  4. ^ Setrakian, Lara. "Iran Finally Releases Osama's Daughter". ABC News. 
  5. ^ Theodoulou, Michael. "Osama bin Laden's mother-in-law 'collapsed and died on news of his death'". The National.