Mohamed Anwar Al-Sadat Biography

Claim to Fame: President of Egypt
DOB: 1918
Date of Death: 1981
Diabetes Type: unknown

Mohamen Anwar Al-Sadat was an Egyptian politician and served as the President of Egypt from September 28, 1970 until his assassination on October 6, 1981.

He was born in Mit Abu Al-Kum, Al-Minufiyah, Egypt, to a poor Egyptian-Sudanese family, one of 13 brothers and sisters. He graduated from the Royal Military Academy in Cairo and joined the Free Officers Movement, committed to freeing Egypt from British control.

During World War II he was imprisoned by the British for his efforts to obtain help from the Axis Powers in expelling occupying British forces. He participated in the 1952 coup which dethroned King Farouk I. In 1969, after holding many positions in the Egyptian government, he was chosen to be Vice-President by President Gamal Abdal Nasser. When Nasser died the following year, Sadat became President.

In 1973, Sadat, together with Syria, led Egypt into the Yom Kippur War with Israel, and succeeded in regaining parts of the Sinai Peninsula, which had been conquered by Israel during the Six-Day War. While the territorial gains of Egypt in this war were limited, Sadat's initial victories eventually led to regaining and reopening the Suez canal, and both restored Egyptian morale and shook Israeli confidence in their military supremacy, laying the ground for a peace settlement several years later. For many years after, Sadat was known as the "Hero of the Crossing".

On November 19, 1977 Sadat became the first Arab leader to officially visit Israel when he met with Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin, and spoke before the Knesset in Jerusalem. He made the visit after receiving an invitation from Begin and sought a permanent peace settlement (much of the Arab world was outraged by the visit). In 1979, this resulted in the Camp David Peace Agreement, for which Sadat and Begin received the Nobel Peace Prize.

In September of 1981, Sadat cracked down on Muslim organizations and Coptic organizations, including student groups; the arrests totaled nearly 1600, earning worldwide condemnation for the extremity of his techniques. Meanwhile, internal support for Sadat disappeared under the pressure of an economic crisis and Sadat's suppression of dissidents. On October 6, the month after the crackdown, Sadat was assassinated during a parade in Cairo by army members who were part of the Egyptian Islamic Jihad organization.

Sadat was married twice. He divorced Ehsan Madi to marry half-Egyptian/half-British Jehan Raouf (later known as Jihan Sadat), who was barely 16, on May 29, 1949. They had three daughters and one son.

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Last Modified Date: November 28, 2012

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