In the fith year of Nubuwwat, when the persecutions by the Quraish became intolerable, Rasulullah (peace and blessing be upon him) gave permission to the Muslims to migrate to Abyssinia (Ethiopia), the kingdom of king Negus (Najjashi), situated in the north-east of Africa. In the first group that decided to leave were people of respectable families and people of good standing in the community. Hazrat Uthman-bin-Affan (R.A.) his wife Ruqayyah (daughter of Rasulullah (peace and blessing be upon him) ) Hazrat Huzayfa-bin-Utbah (R.A.).,  Hazrat Abdullah-bin-Mas'ood (R.A.) and Hazrat Abdul Utbah (R.A.) were part of this group.

When this group left for Jeddah to embark for Abyssinia, they were followed by the cruel Quraish. Fortunatley their ship sailed before the Quraish could lay hands on the Muslims.

When they reached Abyssinia, king Negus (Najjashi) welcomed them in a friendly way and they began to live peacefully. Later, other Muslims followed until there were about Eighty-three in Abyssinia.

A few months after this migration (Hijjrah), the Muslims heard a a rumor that the whole tribe of the Quraish had become Muslim, and that Makkah was now safe for the Muslims. A few Muslims returned to Makkah only to find that this was not true. So they went back to Abyssinia with a few more Muslims who wished to escape from the persecution of the Quraish. This was known as the second Migration to Abyssinia.

It was obvious that the Quraish would not be satisfied until they had eliminated all signs of Islam form Arabia and the neighbouring countries. The Quraish sent envoys to King Negus (Najjash) telling him that the Muslims who had arrived were rebel slaves and that he should deport them back to Makkah for punishment. But Hazrat Jafar-bin-Abi Talib RA 's sincere explanations to the king thwarted the insinuations of the Quraish and King Negus allowed the Muslims to stay on in Abyssinia.
This was the sixth year of Nubuwwat and it was at this time that Hazrat Hamzah RA had embraced Islam.

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