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Yazid Ibn Mu’awiya (born July 23, 645; died 683), commonly known as Yazid I, was the second Caliph of the Umayyad Caliphate, ruling for three years from 680 CE until his death in 683 CE. The period of Yazid's rule is thought of as a disaster for Muslims and his rule is still remembered by many, especially Shia Muslims. His period witnessed the massacre of Kerbala, losses in North Africa, and a loss of supremacy at sea. During this period, the spoliation and profanation of the holy cities of Mecca and Medina by his forces occurred. Muawiyah I was ####succeeded by his son Yazid I as was customary in Arabia at the time. Yazid asked Governors of all provinces to take an oath of allegiance to him. The necessary oath was secured from all parts of the country except from Husain and Abdullah ibn Zubayr. However, Husain was not appointed as Governor by Yazid and never claimed this position for himself. This is evident by the numerous letters sent by Yazid to the Governor of Medina Walid son of Utbah. Historians have recorded that the contents of the letter were solely for the purposes of obtaining allegiance from Husain. Additionally, as Yazid knew that Walid would not be able to handle this task due to his cowardice, he sent Marwan, a soldier in his army, to assist in this task. Husayn ibn Ali did not give his oath of allegiance to Yazid. He stated, "no one like myself could ever give allegiance to someone like you", referring to Yazid's open deviations from the religion of his Grandfather. He was living in Medina with his family, but Yazid considered him a threat to his rule and ordered his governor either to take an oath from Husayn or bring him his head. Husayn ibn Ali refused this demand and hence was pushed to a limit that he finally decided to leave Medina. Husayn ibn Ali received many letters from the Kufans expressing their offer of support if he claimed the caliphate, but Kufans disappeared and betrayed him, finally making the way to kill Hussain. During the caliphate of Yazid, Muslims suffered several setbacks. In 682 AD Yazid restored Uqba ibn Nafi as the governor of North Africa. Uqba won battles against the Berbers and Byzantines. From there Uqba marched on thousands of miles westward towards Tangier, where he reached the Atlantic coast, and then marched eastwards through the Atlas Mountains. Yazid I was succeeded by his son Muawiyah II.
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