Hyperlink to Source
Mohammed Abder Rauf Arafat al-Kudwa al-Husseini was born in 1929 of Egyptian parents. He adopted the name Yasser meaning 'easy-going' adding ABU AMAR after a companion of the Prophet Muhammad. He is a practising Muslim, has performed the Hajj to Mecca and wears a pendant engraved with a verse from the Qur'an.
Other versions of Arafat’s birth name –Abd al-Rahman Abd al-Raul Arafat al Qudua (or Kudua) al-Husseini
or Abdul Raul el-Chodbi al-Husseini The name Yasser is also recorded as having after Yasser al Birah a leader in the Grand Mufti’s 1930’s reign of terror.
The PLO chairman once declared Jerusalem his home town: "This is my city ... This is where I was born." But (as noted) he was not born in Jerusalem, not even - as some of his comrades claimed - in the Khan Younis refugee camp in Gaza, but in Cairo in 1929, the fifth of seven children of a Palestinian merchant called Abdul Raouf al-Qudwa al-Husseini who was killed fighting the Israelis 20 years later. The al-Husseini name was but one of four genealogies; not actually related to the Grand Mufti of the same name. It is nevertheless, sometimes claimed that Arafat’s maternal grandfather was Mahmoud al Husseini and cousin to Haj Amin al-Husseini. Hence the claim that the grand Mufti of the 30’s was Arafat’s Uncle. As Arafat lived in both Cairo and Jerusalem he found cause to claim the Grand Mufti [Amin al Husseini] of Jerusalem as his Uncle. This monster of Islam went to Hitler in Berlin in the 40’s, requesting that the Nazi killing machine be brought to Jerusalem to kill off all the Jews there. Yes, indeed, Arafat closely resembles his ‘supposed’ uncle in word and deed.
What is known is that he was brought up and educated in Egypt after his parents had emigrated from Palestine. It is important to note that they were NOT "refugees" or "exiles." They had simply moved to Egypt in the 1920s ... more than twenty years BEFORE the State of Israel came into existence! Yasser Arafat himself keeps his exact lineage and birthplace secret.
Both Yasser Arafat and Saddam Hussein were greatly influenced by the Mufti during their time in Cairo during the 1950s. Saddam Hussein was raised in the house of his uncle Khayrallah Tulfah, a leader in the Mufti's pro-Nazi coup in Iraq in May 1941. BUT
Arafat lived in Cairo until the age of 28 and identified as an Egyptian. His first political affiliation was an Egyptian student organization closed to Palestinians. He fought for an Egyptian group against Israel in 1948-49 and subsequently served in the Egyptian military. He first traveled to Moscow, in 1968, on an Egyptian passport.
In the wars with the Jews, Arafat fought on the side of this grand mufti of Jerusalem. He has proven himself a worthy successor to Haj Muhammad Amin al Husseini, the mufti of Jerusalem, who led the Palestinians during the 1930s into their (abortive) rebellion against the British mandate government and during the 1940s into their (again abortive) attempt to prevent the emergence of the Jewish state in 1948, resulting in their catastrophic defeat and the creation of the Palestinian refugee problem.
see Encyclopedia of the Orient
Having completed the Hajj the surname ‘Arafat’ is after the hill Arafat 6 miles from Mecca (circumvented during the Hajj- referred to in the sura “cow’’ in the Qur’an)
The French researchers tell an amusing story of discovery. They went to the University of Cairo and innocently asked for the registration of one Muhammad Abd ar-Ra'uf Arafat al-Qudwa al-Husayni at the School of Civil Engineering in 1956.
This, Arafat's birth name, means nothing to the Egyptian clerk, who "sits down behind a rickety wooden table, almost completely hidden by the pile of dusty files bound in black leather" and "blows off a layer of grime in a most professional way," then hands over the records. In a blue ink faded by time, the researchers find that their man, living at 24A Baron Empain Street, Heliopolis, "was born on August 4, 1929, in Cairo." With this information in hand, they dashed over to the State Registry and found Arafat's actual birth certificate, which confirms the date and place.
Arafat then lived in Cairo until the age of 28 and identified as an Egyptian. His first political affiliation was an Egyptian student organization closed to Palestinians. He fought for an Egyptian group against Israel in 1948-49 and subsequently served in the Egyptian military. He first traveled to Moscow, in 1968, on an Egyptian passport.
Arafat all his life has spoken Arabic like an Egyptian, something that has sometimes impeded his career; on first encountering him in 1967, a biographer recounts, "West Bankers did not like his Egyptian accent and ways and found them alien."
How is it that [Arafat became a "Palestinian"]? The answer probably lies in the fact that for a politically ambitious activist, Palestinian politics has far more to offer than Egypt's. ...a politician finds the path to power far more open; had Arafat made Egypt his life's work, he might today be a retired deputy from that country's rubber-stamp parliament.
Being Palestinian, in other words, is a good career move.
by Daniel Pipes, director of the Philadelphia-based Middle East Forum, in an article first published in The Jerusalem Post of September 7, 1999
Yasser Arafat was born in 1929 in Jerusalem. His full name is: Mohammed Abad Arouf Arafat. He studied civil engineering at Cairo University. The Nobel Foundation