Yusuf al-Qaradawi is an Egyptian Islamic theologian based in Doha, Qatar, and chairman of the International Union of Muslim Scholars.
He is the first Egyptian on the terror list announced by Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the UAE and Bahrain. The countries have collectively designated 59 individuals and 12 institutions that have financed terrorist organizations and received support from Qatar.
Al-Qaradawi is known for being a caller and an avid advocate of suicide bombings and martyrdom. He promoted and legitimized martyrdom operations referring to them as “a higher form of jihad for the sake of Allah.”
While the Grand Mufti of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah al-Sheikh considers suicide as “nothing but self-killing,” al-Qaradawi’s fatwa’s regarding jihad encouraged and indorsed fighting the enemies of God in extreme ways.
“With a new weapon that was put by fate in the hands of the vulnerable to use in resistance against the mighty power of the arrogant, "Sheikh al-Qaradawi once justified suicide bombings in an exclusive interview with Al-Jazeera Network.
When asked in an interview that was reported by AFP about suicide bombings in the case of war, Saudi Grand Mufti spoke about self-defense by stating that it shouldn’t manifest in ways that are “against Sharia” since bloodshed and self-killing is against the teachings of Islam.
"I do not know how this can be legitimatized nor be considered as jihad for the sake of Allah. I'm afraid that it is nothing but self-killing," Saudi Grand Mufti opposed al-Qaradawi.
On top of Cairo’s ‘most wanted’ list
Qaradawi has been living in Qatar since 1961. He escaped since the rule of Egyptian President Gamal Abdel-Nasser after being arrested in January 1954 and then in November of the same year.
In 1961 al-Qaradawi traveled to Qatar where he served as the Director of the Secondary Religious Institute. After settling there, he obtained the Qatari citizenship. In 1977 he established the Dean of the Faculty of Shari'a and Islamic Studies at Qatar University. He was its dean until the end of 1990, then President of the World Union of Muslim Scholars.
Al Qaradawi was born September 9, 1926 in the village of Safat Tarab Mahalla Al-Kubra Center in Gharbia Governorate in Egypt. He belonged to the Muslim Brotherhood group and became one of its well-known leaders and mentor. He was offered to take up the position of ‘Morshed’ several times but he refused. He attended meetings of the International Organization of the Muslim Brotherhood as representative of the Muslim Brotherhood in Qatar.
Al-Qaradawi wrote the book "The Muslim Brotherhood Seventy Years in the Call, Education and Jihad", which deals with the history of the group since its inception to the end of the twentieth century and its religious, cultural and social role in Egypt and other countries of the world in which they are located.
Al-Qaradawi considered Hasan al-Banna, the founder of the Muslim Brotherhood, a "Sunni project that needs to be activated." He described the Muslim Brotherhood as "the best group among the Egyptian people with their behavior, ethics and thought.”
During his stay in Qatar, al-Qaradawi did not forget to react against the regime in Egypt. Therefore, immediately after the outbreak of the January revolution, Qaradawi was a supporter of the revolution against the Mubarak regime and he continued to preach in the mosques of Qatar or the words broadcast by Al-Jazeera to mobilize the Egyptians and to overthrow him.
After the arrival of the Muslim Brotherhood, al-Qaradawi visited Egypt many times, and addressed the Egyptians from Tahrir Square and Al-Azhar Mosque, calling for revolution against all those belonging to the Mubarak regime and what he called the military rule. Qaradawi said Mohamed Morsi's victory was a victory for the great Egyptian revolution and described his military rival Ahmed Shafiq as one of the enemies of the revolution.
The June 30th revolution came to abort all the dreams and aspirations of Qaradawi, and he did not stand by them. He even launched a war against all those who revolted against Morsi and the Brotherhood. He accused the Egyptians rejecting the rule of Morsi as Khawarij (enemies of Islam).
Al-Qaradawi was caught up in blazing sedition and instigated the protesters in through the screen of AlJazeera channel shaking the stability and calling for the return of Morsi and the Brotherhood. He called for international intervention to bring Morsi back to power and for the trial of then Defense Minister, army and police leaders before international courts.
He was involved in the case of the "prison break-in", which dates back to the revolution of 25 January 2011. Al-Qaradawi participated in planning and inciting the smuggling of Brotherhood leaders from prison during that time dubbed ‘the Friday of anger.’
Charges against al-Qaradawi involve communicating with foreign organizations and countries, the disclosure of the secrets, the implementation of acts of terrorism, violence inside Egypt and the preparation of a terrorist scheme in cooperation with the leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt with Hamas, Lebanese and other organizations inside and outside the country, embracing extremist Takfiri ideas, smuggling weapons on the western border along the desert routes, and managing infiltration of elements of Hamas and Hezbollah through underground tunnels, and bringing them into the country to provoke chaos and sabotage, attacking the Egyptian regime and killing civilian demonstrators.
Investigations showed that Qaradawi opened channels of communication with Qatar and Turkey, where Qatar provided him with the necessary funds devoted to create a state of chaos, and damaging the Egyptian national security.
Since the outbreak of the revolution in June 2013, he has not thought of returning to Egypt for fear of being arrested and carrying out a judicial sentence against him. He continued to incite and conspire against the Egyptian regime and the Egyptian people to perpetuate chaos and overthrow the regime of President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.
Egyptian lawyers have filed lawsuits to withdraw Qaradawi's nationality and the cases are still in court. Also, a campaign against al-Qaradawi, where lawyers filed a complaint before the Attorney General of the Alexandria Appeal court accuse him of inciting the military establishment and the police.
Qaradawi is responsible for the escalation of terrorist attacks in Egypt and the killing of hundreds of Egyptian army and police because of his fatwas. The fatwas aimed at undermining national unity and demanding the major powers to intervene militarily in Egypt, put al-Qaradawi on the list of terror.