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Sayf al-Adl

Near East (North Africa and the Middle East)


Rewards for Justice is offering a reward of up to $10 million for information on Sayf al-Adl. Al-Adl is an Iran-based al-Qa’ida (AQ) senior leader and a member of AQ’s senior leadership council, the Majlis al-Shura. Al-Adl also heads AQ’s military committee.

Al-Adl was indicted and charged by a U.S. federal grand jury in November 1998 for his role in the August 7, 1998 bombings of the U.S. embassies in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, and Nairobi, Kenya. The attacks killed 224 civilians and wounded more than 5,000 others.

After the 1998 U.S. Embassy bombings, al-Adl moved to southeastern Iran and lived under the protection of Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps. In April 2003, Iranian authorities placed him and other AQ leaders under house arrest.

In September 2015, al-Adl and four other senior AQ leaders were released from Iranian custody in exchange for an Iranian diplomat kidnapped by AQ in Yemen.

Al-Adl was a senior lieutenant to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, founder of AQ in Iraq, which later became the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

As early as 1990, al-Adl and other AQ operatives provided military and intelligence training in various countries, including Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Sudan, to members of AQ and its affiliated groups, including the Egyptian Islamic Jihad.

In 1992 and 1993, he provided military training to AQ operatives and Somali tribesmen who fought against U.S. forces in Mogadishu during Operation Restore Hope.

As a lieutenant colonel in Egypt’s special forces in the mid-1980s, he became involved in efforts to overthrow the Egyptian government. In 1987, he was arrested along with thousands of other anti-government militants after an assassination attempt against the Egyptian Interior Minister. Authorities released and then demoted al-Adl, who in 1989 traveled to Afghanistan where he became a trainer for the nascent AQ.

On September 23, 2001, al-Adl was listed in the Annex to Executive Order 13224, and consequently, he is subject to sanctions under it as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist. As a result of this designation, among other consequences, all property and interests in property of al-Adl that are subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in any transactions with al-Adl. In addition, it is a crime to knowingly provide, or attempt or conspire to provide material support or resources to the FTO AQ. Al-Adl is on the FBI’s Most Wanted Terrorists List.



Associated Location(s):


Date of Birth:

April 11, 1963;April 11, 1960

Place of Birth:

Monufia Governate, Egypt





Hair Color:


Eye Color:




Distinguishing Features:

May sport a beard and glasses.

Languages Spoken:


Aliases/Alternative Name Spellings:

Saif al-Adel;Seif Al Adel;Ibrahim al-Madani;Muhamad Ibrahim Makkawi


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