MB Bloc Mourns Former Defense Minister Abu Gazalla

MB Bloc Mourns Former Defense Minister Abu Gazalla

Muslim Brotherhood parliamentarians expressed their condolences over death of former Egyptian defense minister Abdel Halim Abu Gazalla who passed away on Saturday at the age of 78 after a long struggle with throat cancer.


Abu Gazalla was one of the most prominent Egyptian leaders over the past 30 years. He was appointed Minister of Defense in Mubarak’s first government from 1981 and resigned 1989 following rumors about his role in an Egyptian rockets program which drew U.S. concerns.


He is to receive a military funeral on Sunday.


Abu Gazalla was viewed as the powerful pillar in Mubarak’s regime over the first ten years of Mubarak’s presidency. His leaving of his post in 1989 coincided with rumors about his rising influence and power in the government.


There were news that Abu Gazalla intends to nominate himself to presidency in the first muti-candidate presidential elections of 2005, but Mubarak, it is said, convinced him to change his mind.


Abu Gazalla was one of the free officers who led the revolution of 1952. He also fought in the 1984 Palestine war while he was still a student in the Military Academy. Moreover, He fought in Suez and 1973 wars and won many medals and military awards.


Abu Gazalla was born in February 1930 in a small village in the Nile Delta Al Beheira governorate. He joined the Military Academy and graduated in 1949. He was awarded the the Leaders Permit from Stalin Academy in the Soviet Union 1961, and obtained a BA degree in Commerce and an MBA from Cairo University.