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. bobgedeon

    Do Egyptians have 2nd Amendment rights?

    January 29, 2011 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  2. Ralph in Orange Park, FL

    Even if the US Government stopped giving $1.3 billion a year to keep this thug in power, they would probably just give the money away to banks anyway.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
    • myklds

      Hi Ralph, did you kept the check voucher?'s Florida?

      January 29, 2011 at 5:15 pm | Report abuse |
  3. abbas

    it is right of Egyptian poeple. I think there right should be given, so mubarak should leave the country.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
  4. bb

    Now this is funny..Iranian govt. is asking the Egyptian govt 'to react peacefully to demonstrations'. Didn't know that they know such notion 'reacting peacefully..' Such hypocrisy!

    January 29, 2011 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
    • myklds

      @bb...Yeah, it's hilarious..but it's far beyond hypocracy. It's something to do with Leaked cables that divulged a conversation between a US diplomat and King Abdullah, of which the latter named Iran as the "Head of the Serpent" that must be cut-off.

      It's a matter of personal grudge between the Leaders of two countries

      If you have notice, the stement from Iran came after Saudi's expressed support for Mubarak.

      January 29, 2011 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Terry

    What I find interesting is that Iran has now sent destroyers to the southern coast of Israel. Nothing like taking advantage of a world distracted with the events in Egypt to position yourself to threatened the people you'd REALLY like to anhiliate.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Guerrero

      If only. If only somebody, ANYBODY, would annhilate Israel. (and no I don't been just destroying the whole country and its people with one fell swoop. but actual targeted attacks completely taking out all of the zionists and their supporters) . or better yet, we would all wake up one morning and israel would just have disappeared from the map. this – this would be f'in awesome.

      January 30, 2011 at 3:07 am | Report abuse |
  6. loveYah

    One's religion is defined by their way of distorting the truth God gave us. Man has conveniently used and misconstrued the Word to meet their own man's own demise. Silly people sacrificing eternity for a short life of power and wealth because they refuse to believe the truth in the Scriptures. Repent, turn back, and love one another. Whether you believe or not, at the end of the day there's no joy in selfishness. If people followed the Scriptures with no IFs, ANDs, or BUTs, life would be a lot better.

    January 29, 2011 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Not Shocked at all!

    Nothing but a bunch of CRIMINALS looting and destroying everything!

    January 29, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Brad

    Americans are funny people. You parade around as the champions of democracy but yet you don't want the people to decide for themselves who they truly want in power. Do you really think that you know what is best for Egypt? Or is the American government and the Saudi King denouncing these protests because they see that the will of the people is different than what their interests dictate in the region. You phoney people, hypocrits. If only you would look back at your history and remember how you became a nation. You fought for what you believed in and it became a reality because you fought for it. Let the Egyptian people do the same. You are not Egyptians. If the Egyptian people, and I emphasize the word people, want someone else in power, let the will of the people rule. A man who's been in power for 30 years, who wants to suceed power to his son, aren't we defiant against those who do the same? Why is America at odds with North Korea? If anything, America should be supporting the democratic process taking place but unfortunately because of their interest in the region, they blind themselves and you get ignorant, idiotic statements that take place in chat forms like this. Wake up!!!

    January 29, 2011 at 12:15 pm | Report abuse |

      Join in !! All about movies !

      January 29, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • howard

      What I find funniest about anti americanists like youelf is the blanket accusations you make against every American, which only makes you look like feral mionded idiot who is just as guilty of generalizing entire populations like you accuse of America of doing. America, if you have not noticed (because you are too busy making ill informed sweeping generalizations) is not exactly in agreement on much of anything. America is many countries rolled up into one. I as an American, prefer our President demand Mubarak step down. He has crossed a line. Allow the people to establish what they want. Thats exactly your point of view, so don't go throwing your shade at my country pal, there are too many of us for you to judge accurately.

      January 29, 2011 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Samir

      Hi Brad

      I am certainly happy to find people like u. I don't know what's happening at ur part of the world it's like, u r brain washed, osamah bin laden & his followers do not represent Muslims ,even Muslims are against him, but we r all surprised, Israel attacked gaza & was throwing white phosphorus on children melting their bones in severe pains destroying schools , killing children killing women & old people, then when 1 of these Israeli soldiers is injured all USA starts shouting look at what Palestinians r doing- these 8 or 9 years old children were also terrorists so they deserve that israe F16 goes & throw missiles on them!!! Now in Egypt it's these people who r not finding food it's them who lives in the graves it's them who earns less than $100 a month – then when they try to remove husni Mubarak who acts as an American or Israeli agent then ppl starts shouting, is it that these humans do not worth to live in freedom like u? U r an amazing buddy Brad & I love the way u respond, u r civilized, educated & follow the justice I salut u

      January 29, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nsain

      I am American and stand along side Howard. The people of Egypt should have the right to select their leaders...

      January 29, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  9. President Obama Must Do The Right Thing

    President Obama must now earn his nobel peace prize and break relations with the Mubarak regime and call for a free democracy to be established with immediacy. If he does not, he will be a hypocrite and will only extend our damaged ill repute internationally even further. The world is watching you Mr. President. Do the right thing.

    January 29, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • bebilo333

      You are wright, mr. president must react now! Mubarak must leave it's for sure! And Obama has to lead the change in Egypt in certain way to let a wide brain man take his place other way the west will have one more country to fight with!

      January 29, 2011 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Brad

    And another thing. If the people want some idiotic muslim lunatic in power, let the will of the people decide that. Not foreign governments or monarchs. It's a predominantly muslim country so it would make sense to have a muslim in power. You know, not all muslims are radicals or has the American media completely warped your perception. Do you think planes are going to start flying again into the Sears tower this time because of this? While you occupy one country and deoccupy another country, leaving them in ruins with their puppet governments, is this not a hypocritical stance?

    January 29, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Sockmonster

    Guess the new world order has hit a snag.

    January 29, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Pat

      nope breaking down governments is part of their plan, through history the elite have destroyed (Ex. the depression) countries then buy at the low point before things go back to normal thus gaining more control easier!

      January 29, 2011 at 1:58 pm | Report abuse |
  12. jxflee

    us s falling time for change time for china n iran 2lead the world. mobarak did nothing to his nation just rubbn em

    January 29, 2011 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  13. UFO2012

    Egyptian people must to ensure the next leader is not a person who blindly supports the Zionism regime of Israel and kissing
    the ASS of Americans.

    January 29, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • howard

      You ought to be encouraging the Egpyttian people to determine their lives for themselves rather than direct them per your personal agenda. I as a freedom loving American want nothing more than the people of Egypt to determine their own lives democratically, without my intervention and I know the majority of my fellow countrymen agree. So that leads me to believe non-Americans like you are just as ignorant as you accuse Americans of being, if not more so.

      January 29, 2011 at 12:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nsain

      Well spoken Howard....

      January 29, 2011 at 1:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • RayM

      Egypt is one of the oldest civilization and I can trust the intelligence of Egyptians. They know that religious extremists will try to exploit the void in political leadership and it's a risk that they are willing to take. For sure, they want freedom and end monarchy but would not want to set the clock 100 years behind by electing those who beheads people.

      January 29, 2011 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  14. bebilo333

    The President who need protestors to remind him about saving the democratie for his people is not worthy to be a president.

    January 29, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  15. warytravler

    Does Egypt have nuclear weapons? Are they secure?... 0_o

    January 29, 2011 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Hajja Romi Elnagar

      No, Egypt doesn't have nuclear weapons. The only country in the Middle East which has nuclear weapons is Israel. We know this because a man named Mordechai Vanunu, who worked at the Israeli nuclear weapons facility at Dimona, revealed their existence. For that, he was imprisoned in solitary confinement in Israel for twelve years, and now is under house arrest.

      January 31, 2011 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
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