Ottoman–Portuguese conflicts (1580–89)

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Ottoman–Portuguese conflicts (1580–1589)
Part of the Ottoman–Portuguese conflicts
Braun Mombasa HAAB.jpg
Portuguese east African possession of Mombasa in the late 16th century.
Date 1580-1589
Location Indian Ocean, the Horn of Africa, East Africa
Result Portuguese victory.
Portuguese control in the South East African coast restored and Mir Ali Bey captured.[1]
Portugal Portuguese Empire  Ottoman Empire
Muzzaffar (Mogadishu area) flag according to 1576 Portuguese map.svg Ajuran Sultanate
Commanders and leaders
Duarte de Menezes
Manuel de Sousa Coutinho
Tomé de Sousa Coutinho
Martim Afonso de Melo
Mir Ali Bey (POW)

The fourth Ottoman-Portuguese Conflicts (1580–1589) was an armed military conflict between the Portuguese Empire against the Ottoman Empire and the Ajuran Empire, in the Indian Ocean.

The Ottoman Navy, from 1580 to 1584 for the first time attacked only the Portuguese ships in the Indian Ocean. In 1585 Mir Ali Bey successfully repelled a Portuguese attempt to capture harbors controlled by the Somalis in the Horn of Africa (Barawa, Jumbo and Mogadishu) but failed to do so.

In 1586 the Portuguese army repelled the Ottomans in Kilifi, Paté and Melinde.

Mombasa was seized by the Ottomans, but the African tribe of Zimba joined the Portuguese and retook the city. The city lost most of her population during the massacre that followed her fall, and had to be rebuilt and repopulated by the Portuguese.

On 30 January 1589, a Portuguese fleet sent from Goa in Portuguese India, with two galleass, five galleys, six galliots, seven other ships and with 900 soldiers,[2] was able to recapture the lost cities and capture the Turkish admiral, Mir Ali Bey.


  1. Couto, Loureiro, p.50
  2. Couto, Loureiro, p.48


  • Attila and Balázs Weiszhár: Lexicon of War (Háborúk lexikona), Athenaum publisher, Budapest 2004.
  • Britannica Hungarica, Hungarian encyclopedia, Hungarian World publisher, Budapest 1994.
  • Dejanirah Couto, Rui Loureiro, Revisiting Hormuz: Portuguese Interactions in the Persian Gulf Region in the Early Modern Period (2008) ISBN 9783447057318

See also