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Abdul Rahman, Tunku (1902–1990), prime minister of Malaysia, was born in Alor Setar, Kedah (a Malay state then under British ‘protection’), on 8 February 1902, the seventh son of Abdul Hamid Halim Shah, sultan of Kedah (fl. 1882–1943), and his Thai wife, ...

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Abdul Razak bin Hussein, Tun (1922–1976), prime minister of Malaysia, was born in Pulau Keladi in the state of Pahang (a Malay state then under British ‘protection’), on 11 March 1922. Descended from a line of Bugis chieftains who had emigrated from Sulawesi...

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Abdurahman, Abdullah (1872–1940), political leader and physician, was born on 18 December 1872 in Wellington, a country town in south-western Cape Colony, the eldest son of the nine children of Abdul Arraman (also known as Rahman), small trader and civic figure, who was a patron of ...

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Abu al-Hasan [Abū'l-Ḥasan] [known as Mirza Abu al-Hasan Shirazi] (1776–1846), diplomatist for Persia, was born in Shiraz, the second son of Mirza Muhammad Ali, a high-ranking Persian court official. His mother was also closely connected with the court through her brother, ...

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Abu Bakar (1833–1895) by unknown photographer © reserved

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Abu Bakar [Abu Bakar ibni al-Marhum Dato Temenggong Sri Maharaja Tun Ibrahim] (1833–1895), sultan of Johore, was born in Teluk Belanga, Singapore, most probably on 3 February 1833, the eldest son of Daing Ibrahim (1810–1862) and his first wife, Encik Ngah (also known as Tengku Andak)...

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Ahmad Khan, Sir Saiyid [Syed Ahmed Khan] (1817–1898), Muslim leader in India, was born on 17 October 1817 in Khwaja Farid's haveli (mansion) near the Tiraha Bahram Khan in Delhi, the youngest of the three children (two boys and one girl) of ...

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Al-Nahas, Mustafa (1879–1965), prime minister of Egypt, was born on 15 June 1879 in Samanud, in the Gharbiyya province of Egypt's Nile delta, where his father was a timber merchant. He attended the Khedival Secondary School in Cairo between 1891 and 1896, and graduated from the ...

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Abdullah Yusuf Ali (1872–1953) by Lafayette, 1930 © National Portrait Gallery, London

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Ali, Abdullah Yusuf (1872–1953), Indian civil servant and Islamic scholar, was born on 4 April 1872 in Surat, Gujarat, India. His father, Yusuf Ali Allahbuksh, otherwise Khan Bahadur Yusuf Ali, a Shi'i in the Dawoodi Bohra tradition, had abandoned the traditional occupation of his community, business, and entered instead the police force, being presented on retirement with the title of ...

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Ali, (Chaudhri) Muhammad (1905–1980), prime minister of Pakistan, 1955–6, was born on 15 July 1905 in Nangalambia village, Jullundur district, Punjab province, India. His father was Chaudhri Khairuddin, a farmer and member of the Arain community, his mother, Ayesha Khairdin; he was the third of five children, with two elder sisters and two younger brothers. ...

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S. V. FitzGerald

revised by Roger T. Stearn

Ameer Ali, Saiyid (1849–1928), judge and Muslim leader in India, was born on 6 April 1849 at Chinsura, Bengal, the fourth son of Saiyid Saadat Ali Khan (who died of cholera in 1856) of Mohan, Oudh, and his wife, the daughter of Shamsuddin Khan...

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Idi Amin (c. 1924–2003) by unknown photographer, c. 1972 Getty Images

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Amin, Idi (c. 1924–2003), president of Uganda, was born about 1924 in Koboko in north-western Uganda to Muslim parents. His mother was a Kakwa; his father is said to have been Nubian, a term used of the Sudanese troops brought into Uganda by ...

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Mohammad Ayub Khan (1907–1974) by unknown photographer © reserved

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Ayub Khan, Mohammad (1907–1974), president of Pakistan, was born on 14 May 1907 at Rehana, in the Hazara district of the North-West Frontier Province of undivided British India. He was the fifth child of Mir Dad Khan, a retired Indian army junior officer. The family were comfortably off, but not wealthy members of the ...

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Azad, Abul Kalam (1888–1958), politician and author, was born on 11 November 1888 in Mecca, Arabia. His father, Sheikh Khairuddin Dehlavi (1831–1908), was an Islamic scholar and Sufi who had migrated to Mecca about the time of the 1857 revolt and there had married an Arab woman, the niece of the mufti of ...

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Bello, Sir Ahmadu [formerly Ahmadu Rabah], sardauna of Sokoto (1910–1966), premier of Northern Nigeria, was born at Rabah, a small riverain town upstream of Sokoto, one of ten half-brothers and fifteen half-sisters born to his father, Ibrahim Rabah, the district head. Both parents were ...

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Bhutto, Zulfikar Ali (1928–1979), president and later prime minister of Pakistan, was born on 5 January 1928 at Larkana, a medium-sized town on the Indus River in Sind, then part of British India. His father, Sir Shahnawaz Bhutto (1888–1957), was one of Sind's...

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Zulfikar Ali Bhutto (1928–1979) by unknown photographer, 1965 Getty Images