Sulayman ibn Nāṣir al-ʿAlwān|
|Other names||Abū ʿAbd Allāh|
Sulayman al-ʿAlwān or more fully Sulaimān ibn Nāṣir ibn ʿAbd Allāh al-ʿAlwān (Arabic: سليمان بن ناصر بن عبد الله العلوان) is a Saudi Arabian Salafi Islamist Scholar and theoretician of militant jihad. He was arrested in 2004 due to his radical beliefs.
Al-Alwan was born in 1969 in Buraidah City, Saudi Arabia, the fourth of nine children. school he learned classics of Islamic theology by heart and attended the teaching circles of various Islamic scholars, before continuing his studies in Medina under Sheikh Hammād Al-Ansārī. As a Scholar, he earned a reputation as a conservative figure. In the 1980s, he distributed leaflets declaring that celebrating those who had memorised the Quran and became Hafiz was a heretical innovation, which led to his imprisonment by Saudi authorities for 18 days. Al-Alwan was banned from teaching in 1997, in 2004 after 7 years of being banned he was once more permitted to give lessons to the general public.
In 2000, he issued a fatwa endorsing the use of suicide bombings against Israel, and in 2001 he supported the destruction of the Buddhas of Bamiyan by the Taliban. Al-Alwan’s mosque in Al-Qassim Province was criticised by moderate Islamic clerics as a "terrorist factory". Among his students was Abdulaziz al-Omari, one of the plane hijackers in the September 11 attacks. After the September 11 attacks, Al-Alwan issued two fatwas (21 September 2001 and 19 October 2001), in which he declared that any Muslim who supported the Americans in Afghanistan was an infidel, and called on all Muslims to support the Afghans and Taliban by any means, including jihad. In January 2002, Alwan and two other radical Saudi clerics, Hamoud al-Aqla al-Shuebi and Ali al-Khudair, wrote a letter to Taliban leader Mullah Omar praising him and referred to him as the Commander of the faithful.
On 31 March 2003, 11 days after the start of the Iraq War, al-Alwan published an open letter in which he called on the Iraqi people to fight the American soldiers and use suicide bombings against them. On 28 April 2004, Saudi authorities arrested al-Alwan, after being held for 9 years without trial, he was released on 5 December 2012.
In October 2013, Alwan was sentenced to a 15-year prison term; charges included questioning the legitimacy of the country’s rulers and financing terrorism by collecting money for Al-Qaeda in Iraq leader, Abu Musab Al-Zarqawi. With time already served, he was due to spend six more years in jail.
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