Mus'ab formed a big army and headed for Kufa. He took Mukhtar by surprise.
Ibraheem al-Ashtar was in Mousal City. Mukhtar faced Bin al-Zubair with his small army. The two sides won victories during the first fights.
Bin al-Zubair's army launched a strong attack. It forced Mukhtar 's army to come back to Kufa.
Mus'ab's army followed Mukhtar to Kufa. It besieged his palace. The siege went on for four months. Mukhtar tried to raise the siege. He ordered the Kufians to make street clashes. But they disobeyed him.
On 14th Ramadan, Mukhtar decided to leave his palace. He said to his companions:
The siege will weaken us more and more! Let's go out and die martyrs.
Only seventeen persons obeyed Mukhtar . They went out to fight the big army that surrounded his palace.
Mukhtar was sixty-seven years old. He fought bravely. Then he died a martyr for Islam.
Mus'ab cheated the persons who stayed in the palace. He promised not to harm the if they came out. When they opened the gates of the palace, he ordered his soldiers to kill them all. Meanwhile, he executed seven thousand people on one day. It was a horrible massacre. The Kufians had never seen it before.