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Al Senussi-king IDRIS


was the first King of

reigning from 1951 to 1969. Born Sidi Muhammad Idris al-Mahdi al-Senussi

the grandson of Sayyid Muhammad bin 'Ali as-Senussi, the founder of the Senussi Muslim sufi order

Politically, Idris spent the early part of his career attempting to negotiate independence for his territory, Cyrenaica. in 1922 after the Italians began waging military campaigns against the Libyan hinterland he went into exile. Egypt then served as his base in a guerrilla war against the colonial Italian authorities. In 1942 Idris returned to Libya, after Britain occupied Libya. Idris then formed an official government.

During World War II (Look here for photograph taken with Major Winston Forman [1]), Idris supported the United Kingdom and brought the Cyrenaican nationalists to fight alongside the Allies against the Axis, which had occupied Libya. With the defeat of the German's army under Erwin Rommel, he was finally able to return to his capital, Benghazi.

On September 1, 1969, while Idris was in Turkey for medical treatment, he was deposed by the Libyan army under the leadership of Colonel Muammar al-Qaddafi in a bloodless coup. In the instant of Idris's abdication, his heir Sayyid Hasan ar-Rida al-Mahdi as-Sanussi became king, but he reigned for less than one day and was then deposed. Idris eventually went into exile in Egypt, and died in Cairo in 1983.

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