Biat is an Arabic term to the close spiritual family of the Prophet Mohammad in Islam. Imam is a spiritual preacher or mentor. Therefore the name Biat Al-Imam means the Spiritual Family of the Islamic Mentor, probably refers to the Prophet Mohammad. (In the Shiaa faith there is a hidden Imam who will return to save Muslims when the time will be right).

In 1992, in Zarqa, Jordan, a group of Muslim scholars and veterans from Afghanistan formed a spiritual group, which they named – Biat Al-Imam. The founders were Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, the leader of the group, who returned from Afghanistan and Pakistan in 1992; Abu Musab al Zarqawi, a veteran from Afghanistan, his fellow veteran from Afghanistan – Abu Qatada and the Muslim cleric from Palestinian descent Abu Anas al-Shami. 

The group turned very soon from theological debates to a boisterous opposition against the Jordanian regime and, eventually, in 1994, to actual terror activity, when a series of bombings took place in movies in the Jordanian cities of Zarqa and Amman.

Abu Qatada left to UK already in late 1993, Abu Musab al Zarqawi was arrested in 1995 and, when he was released in 1999, he fled to Kurdistan. Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi was arrested on and off several times and the group was, actually, dismantled in 1995-6.

Although Biat Al-Imam was a very short living organization it had great influence on the youngsters in Zarqa region and many of them joined Jihadi organizations and formed terror cells inside Jordan and abroad. Biat Al-Imam was the source of Islamic terror in Jordan.


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