Egypt unrest: Mubarak at military center, Al Jazeera slams Egyptian government
Egyptian army tanks move along the Corniche Al Nile near the Information Ministry.
January 29th, 2011
06:03 PM ET

Egypt unrest: Mubarak at military center, Al Jazeera slams Egyptian government

Read full coverage of the unrest in Egypt updated continually by CNN reporters worldwide. Are you there? Send your photos and video to iReport.

Thousands of demonstrators took to the streets of Egypt's major cities on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, demanding an end to President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year-rule. Here are the latest developments as confirmed by CNN.

Sunday January 30, 2011:

[Update 3 p.m. Cairo, 8 a.m. ET] Turkey has sent two planes to Egypt to begin evacuating its citizens.

[Update 2:45 p.m. Cairo, 7:45 a.m. ET] State-run Nile TV reports that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak is currently visiting an armed services operations center to follow up on the security situation and in show of support. State television also reporting that Egypt's military has arrested 450 people in various parts of Cairo.

Egypt's defense minister, Gen. Mohamad Tantawi, urged the public Sunday to obey the 4 p.m.-8 a.m. curfew (9 a.m.-1 a.m. ET) Tantawi's statement was carried by state television, and Tantawi was escorted to the network's headquarters by red-helmeted troops in a convoy of sport-utility vehcies. Tantawi is among the Cabinet ministers that Mubarak announced he was replacing over the weekend.

Also Sunday afternoon in Cairo, Al Jazeera "strongly denounces" the closure of its Cairo bureau by the Egyptian government, the news network said in a statement Sunday. Egypt's information ministry announced the shutdown of Al Jazeera in Egypt and the withdrawal of its media license to operate in the country, state-run Nile TV reported Sunday.

Saturday January 29, 2011:

[Update 1:50 a.m. Cairo, 6:50 p.m. ET] - Roughly 1,000 prisoners have escaped from Prison Demu in Fayoum, southwest of Cairo, state-run Nile TV reported early Sunday. The inmates are "on the streets causing chaos and families are scared," according to Nile TV.

[Update 1:33 a.m. Cairo, 6:33 p.m. ET] - Seventeen people have been shot to death by Egyptian police, according to Reuters.

Twelve people were killed trying to attack a police station in Beni Suef governorate, south of Cairo, Reuters reported. Another five people died in an attempted attack on a station in Nasr City, according to Reuters.

[Update 1:16 a.m. Cairo, 6:16 p.m. ET] - CNN's Ben Wedeman (#bencnn) tweeted that angry crowds dragged two looters to soldiers. The army is in control of the Egyptian Museum.

The Egyptian Museum hosts one of the most extensive collections of Egyptian artifacts in the world, including the treasures of Tutankhamun. In addition to jewelry, sculptures and artwork, the museum boasts the Royal Mummy Room, which features the remains of several pharaohs. The artifacts were discovered around the turn of the 20th century.

In Alexandria, CNN's Nic Robertson (#NicRobertsonCNN) tweeted that gangs of machete- and iron-bar-wielding youths are stalking the deserted streets of Alexandria despite a curfew.

[Update 12:53 a.m. Cairo, 5:53 p.m. ET] - In front of military tanks, people have gathered arm in arm outside the Egyptian Museum, protecting the famed building from looters.

[Update 10:47 p.m. Cairo, 3:47 p.m. ET] - CNN's Ben Wedeman (#bencnn) sent these tweets within the past 20 minutes:

  • Neighborhood protection groups wearing white armbands in Cairo. People getting organised to end chaos and looting.
  • NDP source says Omar Sulaiman VP appointment should be seen as first step for transfer of power.

[Update 9:40 p.m. Cairo, 2:40 p.m. ET] - National Security Adviser Tom Donilon on Saturday held a meeting with top officials to discuss the events in Egypt, White House spokesman Tommy Vietor said. Among the participants were Vice President Joe Biden, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Israeli politician Benjamin Ben Eliezer says Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak recently told him "this is not Beirut and not Tunis." In an interview with Israeli TV on Saturday, Eliezer said that Mubarak suggested that Egyptian authorities knew what was going on and had prepared the army in advance.

In Alexandria, the scene at hospitals was chaotic, CNN's Nic Robertson said in a message on Twitter. The facilities were short-staffed and injured protesters said they were not being treated quickly enough.

[Update 8:19 p.m. Cairo, 1:19 p.m. ET] Cairo residents have given accounts of lawlessness after police withdraw from the streets. There were reports of looting and residents appealing to authorities for protection.

  • CNN photojournalist Mary Rogers saw businesses looted in a downtown Cairo mall. She saw fast-food restaurants - KFC and Hardee's - smashed and looted. People were carrying items from the mall.
  • Journalist Ian Lee said vigilante groups in a middle-class Cairo neighborhood called Dohy were forming to protect personal property. He heard live fire, but saw no police presence. Soldiers were in the area but did not respond to the trouble, he said.
  • CNN's Fred Pleitgen tweeted: Illegal checkpoints popping up in Cairo. Just ran by a group of guys with guns and clubs.
  • From Alexandria, CNN's Nic Robertson tweeted: Without police, Alexandria residents fearful of looting, set up neighborhood watch, board shop windows.

[Update 7:05 p.m. Cairo, 12:05 p.m. ET] CNN's Ben Wedeman (#bencnn) sent this series of tweets within the past 20 minutes:

  • Came to office by Cairo metro today. People talking about Mubarak as president IN THE PAST TENSE. For most I spoke, Mubarak is gone.
  • Almost all police stations ransacked, arsenals looted. Suddenly weapons in the streets wielded by thugs. Where is the army?
  • Saw a truckload of riot police leaving Cairo this morning. they looked defeated and scared. people say "they should be"
  • Widely believed hated #Egypt police force playing part in the chaos and looting. they've abandoned their posts, in civilian clothes
  • In residential areas of Cairo people setting up barricades to protect their streets. Wielding clubs, knives fearing looters.
  • Man in Tahrir Square told me "We have fired Mubarak." It's clear from the streets that he's no longer wanted.

[Update 6:55 p.m. Cairo, 11:55 a.m. ET] At least 31 people have been killed in protests in Alexandria, Egypt, hospital authorities told CNN Saturday.

[Update 6:46 p.m. Cairo, 11:46 a.m. ET] Omar Suleiman, Egypt's newly appointed deputy president, "is someone that we know well and have worked closely with," State Department spokesman PJ Crowley told CNN on Saturday.

[Update 6:19 p.m. Cairo, 11:19 a.m. ET] Egyptian Army Chief of Staff Sami Annan was huddling Saturday with five of his deputies after returning to Egypt from Washington, a senior Egyptian military official told CNN. Annan and other top officials were attending high-level talks with Pentagon officials when this week's unrest broke out and those meetings were cut short Friday for the Egyptians to return to Cairo.

[Update 6:07 Cairo, 11:07 ET] Ahmed Shafik, a minister from the cabinet that resigned today, has been appointed to form a new government, state TV reported. Shafik is Egypt's former civil aviation minister.

[Update 5:45 p.m. Cairo, 10:45 a.m. ET] At least five people have died from gunshot wounds near the Egyptian Interior Ministry, according to a physician at a triage center in a Cairo mosque.

[Update 5:28 p.m. Cairo, 10:28 a.m. ET] Omar Suleiman, a former head of intelligence, has been appointed presidential deputy for Egyptian leader Hosni Mubarak, state TV reported.

[Update 5:19 p.m. Cairo, 10:19 a.m. ET] The Egyptian military is urging people "to stop the looting, chaos and the things that hurt Egypt. Protect the nation, protect Egypt, protect yourselves," according to state TV in Egypt.

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas called Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Saturday, affirming his solidarity with Egypt, the official Palestinian news agency reported.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague urged Mubarak on Saturday to seize the moment and carry through with reforms in Egypt.

Egypt's ruling party has accepted the resignation of Ahmed Ezz, who was one of its senior leaders and a close confidant of Mubarak's son, according to state-run Nile TV.

The Egyptian military blocked protesters who were trying to enter a central bank building, Al Arabiya is reporting.

[Update 4:40 p.m. Cairo, 9:40 a.m ET] Police are firing on demonstrators at the Interior Ministry building in Cairo, journalist Ian Lee tells CNN. Lee said he was standing over a man who appeared to have been shot in the head.

[Update 4:12 p.m. Cairo, 9:12 a.m. ET] Midyear examinations have been delayed in all of Egypt's universities, state-run Nile TV reported on Saturday.

[Update 4:03 p.m. Cairo, 9:03 a.m. ET] Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of protesters remain in front of the Information Ministry building on Corniche Al Nile in Cairo despite arrival of curfew and presence of army tanks, CNN's Fred Pleitgen reports.

[Update 3:59 p.m. in Cairo, 8:59 ET] A tweet from Ashraf Khalil in Cairo: Was in Tahrir 10 minutes after Mubarak gave his speech. Protestors though[t] it was comical. They weren't even mad, just laughed it off.

[Update 3:39 p.m. Cairo, 8:39 ET] Delta Air Lines says its final flight out of Egypt has departed from Cairo and is scheduled to arrive at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport at 5:50 p.m. ET. "We have suspended flights out of Egypt indefinitely," Delta spokesman Paul Skrbec said. More information is available at Delta's website.

[Update 3:31 p.m. Cairo, 8:31 a.m. ET] Thirty-eight people have died in the unrest in Egypt, including 10 members of the security forces, the state-run Nile TV reported Saturday.

[Update 3:28 p.m. Cairo, 8:28 a.m. ET] The Iranian government urges Egypt to react peacefully to public demonstrations and respond constructively to demonstrators' demands, Iran's state-run Press TV reports.

"Iran expects Egyptian officials to listen to the voice of their Muslim people, respond to their rightful demands and refrain from exerting violence by security forces and police against an Islamic wave of awareness that has spread through the country in form of a popular movement," Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Ramin Mehmanparast said Saturday.

Tehran attaches great importance to the fulfillment of public demands in Egypt, he said.

"Iran regards demonstrations by the Muslim people of this country as a justice-seeking movement in line with their national-religious demands."

In 2009, the Iranian government carried out a bloody crackdown on political demonstrations following the suspicious landslide re-election victory of President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

[Update 2:41 p.m. Cairo, 7:41 a.m. ET] The Egyptian cabinet has presented its resignation in response to President Hosni Mubarak's request in his speech Saturday, Egypt's state-run Nile TV is reporting.

[Update 2:31 p.m. Cairo, 7:31 a.m. ET] A nighttime curfew from 4 p.m. Saturday to 8 a.m. Sunday local time has been imposed in the Egyptian cities of Cairo, Alexandria and Suez, state-run Nile TV reported.

[Update 2:25 p.m Cairo, 7:25 a.m. ET] Saudi Arabia's king told Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak that he stands with the Egyptian government. In the statement reported by the Saudi Press Agency, King Abdullah said in a Saturday phone call to Mubarak that he condemned people who have attempted "to destabilize the nation's security and stability."

[Update 2:11 p.m. Cairo, 7:11 a.m. ET] The Egyptian government has announced that the Egyptian stock market and all banks will be closed Sunday, which usually is a normal business day in the Middle East.

[Earlier] - Cell phone service was apparently restored Saturday morning, a day after the internet went dark in many parts of the country and some text messaging and cell phone services were apparently blocked amid calls for intensified protests.

- Police fired tear gas on protesters who were pushing toward the country's Interior Ministry in Cairo on Saturday.

- At least 2,000 protesters gathered in Raml Square in Alexandria on Saturday. There was no sign of police, and protests appeared peaceful. People chanted, "No for Mubarak and his dynasty."

- They also said, "The military and the people together will change the regime." Protesters smiled and shook hands with troops patrolling the area. One soldier cradled a baby and posed for a picture.

- Also on Saturday, Egyptian military tanks surrounded Cairo's Tahrir Square, where a crowd of hundreds of protesters continue growing. Demonstrators chanted, "Down with Mubarak" and "We are all Egyptians." The atmosphere was tense, but people gathered in the square were posing for pictures with tanks and shaking troops' hands.

- Tahrir Square, located near many government buildings in the heart of downtown Cairo, has been a focal point for protesters. Nearby, police fired tear gas on protesters who were pushing toward the country's Interior Ministry.

- Mubarak said in a speech Saturday morning that he asked the members of his government to resign so that he can form a new government, under his direction.

- The Egyptian leader, who has been president for 30 years, said, "We have to be careful of anything that would allow chaos." He said his primary goal was to protect Egypt's security, and he criticized looters and those who had set fires.

- Mubarak, 82, said that he heard from demonstrators who wanted more job opportunities and lower prices on key goods. According to a translation, he said, "I know all these things ... that the people are asking about it. I've never been separated from it, and I work for it every day."



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Filed under: Egypt • Protest
soundoff (578 Responses)
  1. sad

    But then again egypt has been the source of so many terrorists. No jobs, no oppurtunities, injustice, its not surprising. I guess obama was thinking of that when he made his palacating speech yesterday.

    January 29, 2011 at 6:55 am | Report abuse |
  2. Fred Bartkowski

    We need to stop subsidizing war jobs (MIC) and spend the money sent to Egypt each year on building plowshares.

    January 29, 2011 at 6:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Super G

      Send the money to Egypt? They already are the second largest recipient of American Foriegn Aid. Isreal is the largest. America's Jewish population is less than 3%, yet they manage to funnel over $5 billion in borrowed money to their homeland every year.
      I have an idea, let's quit trying to control other countries and use the money here in America. Every corner of the world has been influenced by America, and we have more countries that despise us for it than thank us.

      January 29, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  3. Victoria

    And WHY is the United States friends with them again???

    January 29, 2011 at 6:58 am | Report abuse |
    • WorldNewsAffectsEVERYONE

      Oil and gold. You see the prices in the stock market skyrocketed after this chaos. Plus, we need some allies in the Middle East with the foes that we have. Gotta have a foot in every region of the world.

      January 29, 2011 at 7:59 am | Report abuse |
    • mary

      oil

      January 29, 2011 at 9:10 am | Report abuse |
  4. j

    And the world wonders why Obama is supporting a ruthless dictator, yet again. j

    January 29, 2011 at 6:59 am | Report abuse |
    • discdogbob

      Because there are so many democratic leaders in the middle east. We support the people that we need to, pretty much has been the case since WWII when we came out of isolationism.

      Do you really think this policy started with Obama, are or you just ignorant of any history at all?

      January 29, 2011 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Kardiac

      So we are to invade and take down your "dictator"? What does the world say then? Here's the idea. You want to change your government do it. When that happens and that new government wants to be allies of the US then we talk. Jeez.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:24 am | Report abuse |
  5. Bloodyscot

    Mubarak will likely stay in power since he may retire soon anyway being 83 but its his replacement that is the major question, will it be another military officer or a politician. The Tunisia revolt pushed this issues soon than many thought but military will likely only let things go so far, since some generals will like to be his replacement.

    January 29, 2011 at 6:59 am | Report abuse |
  6. kasim Sulaiman

    Attention
    if he goes what's the next, think now before it's come too late.
    bad goverment better than without goverment, look tunisa is not stable yet but just getting worse, and don't forget my country somalia, our agenda was to change the ragime, where we are now. thanks

    January 29, 2011 at 7:01 am | Report abuse |
  7. kamal eldrageely

    plea to president Obama , please ask president Mobarak to step down.he has been in power thirty years and it is too late now to start fixing social and economic problems. He should of done that years ago and he had the US financial support. Why would any one think change will happen now.
    changing the cabinet in face of all the turmoil is only a slap on the face to his people. For years he governed using suppression and brutality against his opponents. He stashed and embezzled an estimated 50 billion dollars. he up used his people. million of children running streets of big cities in Egypt without homes or families. They are called street children.They do not have parents and they do not of any. i was visiting Egypt few month ago and was surprised to see how the police treats people. I was not surprised when the curfew was not implemented. People do not believe and do not respect Mobarak any longer.
    Mr president, people in Egypt love and admire united state so please do not turn them down. they will never forget that favor.Help them take the their country back from the tyrant and gain their freedom back.

    January 29, 2011 at 7:02 am | Report abuse |
    • tadaham

      Stop begging others to do what is soley your responsibility. A number of less equiped countries have done much better than middle easterners..
      An indian perspective..

      January 29, 2011 at 9:12 am | Report abuse |
    • mary

      we the people of usa want you free.. but we are not that free ourselves.lmoney and greed ruel the world..

      January 29, 2011 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
  8. Cleopatra

    Mubarak, go and retire already! And open the doors for my carriage and entourage to enter power!Your country need a female president! A female president to lead the youth of the new millenium!

    January 29, 2011 at 7:02 am | Report abuse |
    • Jessica

      Being female is NOT a guarantee the country will be run properly.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  9. Fred Bartkowski

    The navy will just have to sail around Africa untill we put Israel in charge of Suez canal.

    January 29, 2011 at 7:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      @Fred Bartkowski, NO NO NO Israel will NOT be in charge of anything! If the USA let Israel involve, the whole Middle East will turn into CHAOS. It will only add more fuel into the flams. Israel needs to mind their own damn business.

      January 29, 2011 at 7:30 am | Report abuse |
  10. Cleopatra

    I hope El Baradei becomes president. Mubarak pack your bags get out . I cant believe he stayed in office that long. Wow, and so much poverty, and so much tourism. What a 30 year deception. The country is rich in many ways.

    January 29, 2011 at 7:14 am | Report abuse |
  11. mehmood

    I think the military is also tired of Mubarak

    January 29, 2011 at 7:19 am | Report abuse |
  12. Jeff Tomllinson

    Hike unemployment another 15% and the same thing would happen in the US.

    January 29, 2011 at 7:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      No, the same thing would not happen here in the U.S., so long as McDonald's and Wal-Mart were open, and the television still came on.

      January 29, 2011 at 9:13 am | Report abuse |
    • val

      Jim, you are right. We are way to lazy to get off the couch and and create any really change.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
  13. Major Captain John Smith

    In the current operational environment the Abraham's main battle tank has been shown to be an outdated relic of the past. It's only real value being jobs provider for war machine workers.

    January 29, 2011 at 7:32 am | Report abuse |
  14. A girl from Philippines

    Set your people free Mr Mubarak!!!! If not, most likely you will experience "The People's Power" of the Philippines in 1986. Don't wait while you still have time, your people don't like you anymore and besides you are old enough. Stop being greedy, learn how to be merciful. Just pack all your things, go home and relax with your family and granchildren. Give others a chance for a good governance and make your citizens happy!!! Allah will be happy and bless you for that. Promise.....

    January 29, 2011 at 7:37 am | Report abuse |
    • northernstar

      but Ph revolution was peaceful. whats happening in egypt is by far chaotic and death toll is bound to rise if no intervention is done! it is sad, all these unnecessary deaths.

      January 29, 2011 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
  15. Fred Bartkowski

    @Jack. Whomever spends the billions gets to say what country runs the canal.
    Don't worry. Mubarak is a nice guy. He will lower the price of fuel, give all Egyptians free food for one week, and provide free cable tv for one month. Everything will be fine.

    January 29, 2011 at 7:44 am | Report abuse |
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