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Muawiya's Influence in Egypt and Proclamation of Muawiya as Caliph in Defiance of Ali 660

Muawiya's رضي الله عنه Influence in Egypt

With Ali رضي الله عنه in such a weak position, alienated from the Kharijites, who had initially formed a large group of his followers, Muawiyaرضي الله عنه was able to rule Syria completely independent of Kufa. He was keenly interested in gaining control of the rich province of Egypt, which was being badly governed by Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr, one of the mutineers involved in Uthman's رضي الله عنه murder. Seeing that Ali رضي الله عنه was too busy dealing with the dissent in his own camp, he commissioned Amr رضي الله عنه (July) with 6,000 troops to regain the province which he had first conquered about eighteen years earlier. Muhammad, with no popular support, could raise only 2,000 men to fight with him and they were defeated and dispersed almost without a fight.

After being caught, Muhammad was slain, and such was the hatred against him that his body was ignominiously burned in an ass's skin, to the delight of Muawiya'sرضي الله عنه troops. The illustrious Amrرضي الله عنه [d. 663] thus once again became governor of Egypt, recognising Muawiya رضي الله عنه as the legitimate Caliph.

Proclamation of Muawiya as Caliph in Defiance of Ali 660

Muawiya رضي الله عنه formally proclaimed himself Caliph in May at Jerusalem, and received the oath of allegiance from the western provinces. Thus the world of Islam was split into two: Ali رضي الله عنه was in control, though not firmly, of Iraq and Persia, while Muawiya رضي الله عنه ruled Syria and Egypt.

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