Malcolm X Widow Accuses Farrakhan

<i> From Associated Press</i>

Malcolm X’s widow said in a television interview that she believes Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan was involved in her husband’s assassination.

Betty Shabazz previously has criticized Farrakhan but never directly accused him of complicity in the 1965 assassination.

In a taped interview for broadcast Sunday on WNBC-TV’s “News Forum,” Shabazz was asked if she believes that Farrakhan “had anything to do with the death of your husband.”

“Of course, yes,” she replied. “Nobody kept it a secret. It was a badge of honor. Everybody talked about it, yes.”


Shabazz wasn’t asked to elaborate. Telephone calls to her home went unanswered.

Leonard F. Muhammad, chief of staff for the Nation of Islam, denied the charge, calling it part of an effort “to assassinate the character of, cause the false and unjust imprisonment of and incite the murder of Minister Louis Farrakhan and the destruction of the Nation of Islam.”

Malcolm X, who had been the voice of the Nation of Islam under its leader, Elijah Muhammad, was exiled from the group in 1963. He subsequently came under verbal attack from other members.

Farrakhan, who was recruited into the Nation of Islam by Malcolm X, wrote in the Dec. 4, 1964, issue of Muhammad Speaks, the organization’s newspaper: “The die is set and Malcolm shall not escape. . . . Such a man is worthy of death.” Farrakhan was chief minister of the Nation of Islam’s Boston mosque at the time.

Malcolm X was shot to death while speaking in New York City on Feb. 21, 1965. Three black Muslims were convicted of the murder.