Denis Michael Rohan

Denis Michael Rohan was an Australian citizen who gained notoriety for his attempted arson of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem in 1969.

Denis Michael Rohan was born on July 1, 1941, in Australia. Denis gained notoriety for setting fire to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem on 21 August of 1969. This act led to widespread tension in the Muslim world and triggered a significant crisis in the Middle East.

Rohan was arrested by Israeli authorities on 23 August of the same year and was later found to be insane during his trial. He was admitted to a mental institution and later deported to Australia for psychiatric treatment in 1974.

Some sources claimed that he died in 1995, but a 2009 investigation by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) found that he was still alive, and he even spoke to an ABC journalist a few years after the investigation.


Some Notable Facts About Denis Michael Rohan

  • He was a member of the Jehovah’s Witnesses religious group and had moved to Jerusalem to await the arrival of Armageddon, an event believed by some Jehovah’s Witnesses to signify the end of the world.
  • Prior to his attack on the Al-Aqsa mosque, the arsonist had been expelled from the Seventh-day Adventist Church for his extreme beliefs.
  • Rohan was not a trained arsonist and had never been involved in any political or militant groups prior to his attack on the mosque.
  • The attack on the Al-Aqsa mosque sparked protests and violence throughout the Muslim world, leading to a major international crisis.
  • After being deported back to Australia, Rohan was hospitalized in several mental institutions and received ongoing treatment for his mental illness. He remained estranged from his family and largely withdrew from public life.