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Prof. Dr. Mohsen Mohammad Saleh and al-Zaytouna team feel deeply saddened by the loss of a dear friend and a prominent scholar, Professor Ibrahim Abu-Rabi‘, who died suddenly of a heart attack, while attending  a conference in Amman, Jordan, on 2/7/2011.


Dr. Abu Rabi‘ was a close colleague who visited al-Zaytouna Centre several times. Both Dr. Abu Rabi‘ and Prof. Dr. Mohsen Mohammad Saleh, the General-Manager of al-Zaytouna Centre, were in the process of co-editing a book on The Political Thought of Hamas Movement. This book, when published, will be considered an unparalleled and a unique volume, since 12 researchers and experts in the Palestinian studies are contributors to it. Dr. Saleh asserted that he is determined, with the support of the co-authors, to finish the project in memory of Dr. Abu Rabi‘. 

Professor Abu-Rabi‘ is a Palestinian who was born in 1956, in Nazareth, Galilee. He holds dual citizenship in the U. S. and Israel and has received degrees from Birzeit University (in Birzeit, West Bank, Palestine), the University of Cincinnati, and Temple University, Philadelphia. 

In 1987, Dr. Abu-Rabi’ received his Ph.D. at Temple University in Philadelphia. Pa. His dissertation topic was “Islam and the Search for Social Order in Modern Egypt: An Intellectual Biography of Shaykh ‘Abd al-Halim Mahmud.” He also earned a Master of Arts at Temple, and a Master of Arts at the University of Cincinnati. 

Dr. Abu-Rabi‘ has served as Assistant Professor of Islamic Studies in Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies and has held a Rockefeller Fellowship at the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. 

He had been an esteemed Professor of Islamic Studies and Christian-Muslim Relations at Hartford Seminary from 1991 to 2008. 

In 2006 he was the Senior Fulbright Scholar in Singapore and Indonesia at the Institute of Defense and Strategic Studies at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. 

Since 2008, Dr. Abu-Rabi‘ was the Chair of Islamic Studies at the University of Alberta. He was the first holder of the Edmonton Council of Muslim Communities Chair in Islamic Studies, the first teaching and research chair of its kind in Canada. He was fluent in Arabic, Hebrew, English, French and Turkish.  

Prof. Dr. Mohsen Mohammad Saleh and al-Zaytouna team offer their sincerest condolences to Dr. Abu-Rabi’s family, friends and his colleagues. He’ll be missed beyond measure.


Al-Zaytouna Centre for Studies and Consultations, 6/7/2011