Muawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan



Muawiyah I (Arabic: معاوية ابن أبي سفيان‎ Muʿāwiyah ibn ʾAbī Sufyān; 602–680) was the first Caliph of the Umayyad Dynasty. After the conquest of Mecca by the Muslims, Muawiyah's family converted to Islam. Muawiyah became a scribe for Muhammad, and during the first and second caliphates of Abu Bakr and Umar, fought with the Muslims against the Byzantines in Syria.

When Uthman ibn Affan, a cousin of Muawiyah, became the third caliph, he appointed Muawiyah Governor of Syria. However when Ali was appointed the fourth and final Rashidun Caliph, he expelled Muawiyah from the Governorship. Muawiyah refused to obey Ali, and had some level of support from the Syrians in his rebelliousness, amongst whom he was a popular leader.[1] Ali called for military action against Muawiyah, but the reaction of the political classes in Medina was not encouraged, and thus Ali deferred. Eventually Ali marched on Damascus and fought Muawiyah's supporters at the inconclusive Battle of Siffin (657 CE). Ali's son Hasan ibn Ali signed a truce and retired to private life in Medina. Muawiyah thus established the Umayyad Caliphate, which was to be a hereditary dynasty, and governed from Damascus in Syria instead of Medina in Arabia.

Muawiyah I is a reviled figure in Shia Islam for several reasons. Firstly, because of his involvement in the Battle of Siffin against Ali, whom the Shia Muslims believe was Muhammad's true successor (see Succession to Muhammad); Secondly, for the alleged breaking of the treaty he made with Hasan ibn Ali, after death of Hassan ibn Ali by appointing his son Yazid as his successor; thirdly, on account of his responsibility for the killing of Hasan ibn Ali by alluring his wife Ja'dah binte Ash'as(a persian lady) to poison him; and fourthly, for the deaths of various Companions of Muhammad.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muawiyah_I