Egyptian president from 1956 to 1970. He tried to unify the Arab states and fought two wars against Israel, all of which made him a revered figure in Arab politics.
A colonel in the Egyptian army, he helped plan and carry out the Egyptian Revolution of 1952, overthrowing the monarchy.
His Pan-Arab politicking made him popular, but Islamists spoke out against his disregard for religion (and were arrested as a result).
He grew up with seven siblings and was descended from the Hejaz people of the western Arabian Peninsula.
Mohammed Morsi, another Egyptian president, also had to contend with Islamism and Arabism.