Information on militant Islamist (Islamic fundamentalist) organizations in Abu Za'bal (Abu Zabal, Abu Zaabal, Abu Zabaal) [EGY28340.E]

According to a 22 May 1996 Agence France Presse (AFP) dispatch, on 22 May 1996 the Egyptian security forces killed one wanted militant Islamist and arrested 33 others in Cairo. The dead man was Korani Abu Zaid Abdel Hamid, who, along with a partner named Mukhtar Ibrahim Abdel Raziq, had formed two militant cells which "ran a racketeering operation against merchants in the Cairo slums of Imbaba and Abu Zabal," among other activities (ibid.). Korani Abu Zaid Abdel Hamid was a member of a militant Islamist organization called Shawqiyin, which had broken off from the al-Jama'a al-Islamiyya (al-Jamaa al-Islamiyya, al-Gamaa al-Islamiyya) organization. Mukhtar Ibrahim Abdel Raziq, a member of al-Jama'a al-Islamiyya, was among the 33 alleged militants arrested on 22 May 1996.

Although Abu Za'bal is not technically in Cairo, being about 25 kilometres away from the centre of Cairo in the Qalyubiya governate north of the city, it is normally considered to be part of the greater Cairo area, according to a representative of the Ibn Khaldoun Center for Development Studies in Cairo, contacted by the Research Directorate on 18 December 1997 (Imbaba is also technically not part of Cairo, as it is in the Giza governate across the river).

The following information was provided to the Research Directorate in an 18 December 1997 interview with a representative of the Ibn Khaldoun Center for Development Studies in Cairo. In general, militant Islamist organizations are weaker and less active in the Delta (i.e. the area north of Cairo) than they are in southern Egypt. However, the representative stated that militant Islamist organizations are stronger in Abu Za'bal than in most other parts of the Delta. The representative stated that both al-Jama'a al-Islamiya and al-Jihad (al-Gihad) are active in Abu Za'bal.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Agence France Presse (AFP). 22 May 1996. "Moslem Militant Killed in Cairo, 33 Arrested." (NEXIS)

Ibn Khaldoun Center for Development Studies, Cairo. 18 December 1997. Telephone interviews with a representative.

_____. 8 December 1997. Telephone interviews with a representative.