Taizz, Yemen’s third largest city, sits on an elevated plateau surrounded by fertile, green terraced hills and is best viewed from the 3200 meter Jabel Saber which dominates it. Atop this mountain is one of the country’s oldest mosques, the Ahl al Kahf, meaning ‘cave of the people’. This refers to a story in the Koran when several young men who tried to devote themselves to God were made to worship the pagan gods of the time. This forced them to flee to the top of the mountain where they slept for 309 years. Two buildings make up the mosque and obviously the site dates to pre-Islamic times. After my visit I was informed that it has 2 qiblas as it was built when Muslims still prayed towards Jerusalem. If this is true, the mosque would have to date back to 624 or before which is when the Prophet Mohammed changed the direction of prayers to face Mecca. This would be remarkable, as although some parts of Yemen indeed accepted Islam during the lifetime of the Prophet who died in 632, Muad ibn Jabal, the first missionary sent by Mohmammed to Yemen, did not arrive until 631.