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. David M.

    "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.

    Iran is telling Egypt to 'refrain from exerting violence by security forces'??? Now that's funny right there. Of course, it's always couched in terms of Islam. Just can't get away from that.

    I think Iran, and every other country including the US, should keep its nose out of what's happening in Egypt. It's their fight, and no one else's.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:18 am | Report abuse |
    • 2Cents

      IRAN yeah people have been protesting there too a while back peacefully but they lost. IRAN is close doors dealing with protesters so they have control better. No one knows what force IRAN is using against protesters in their own country.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:25 am | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      I really laughed hard when I read that in the article.
      Yeah, we know what they did when the Persian people protested.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jim Weix, Palm City FL

    LOL..."The Iranian government urges Egypt to react peacefully to public demonstrations and respond constructively to (Muslim) demonstrators' demands, Iran's state-run Press TV reports."

    Why not do what the Muslims do: send in suicide bombers! The Muslim religion has the killing of woman and children down to an exact science.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
  3. Philip

    When a government commits heinous criminal acts their subjects are empowered to do the same. I get the sense that US citizens fear this will happen here. This story is getting numerous responses, many more than the usual.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      The Right of the People to bear arms shall not be abridged.

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

    @ Jim Weix...not to mention the women and children dead in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim Weix, Palm City FL

      Philip...The Muslims have perfected killing there also. Everyday the bombers are killing people.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:27 am | Report abuse |
  5. Asghar

    Mubarak does not have any option but to leave,this's been the fate of dictators throughout the history,no tyrany would last for ever,he is finished,even a miracle can not save him.there are planes in the cairo airport waiting to take his family
    to Europe as we speak.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      I think Saddam Hussein would beg to differ.
      He ruled by killing 10's of thousands of his own people EACH YEAR
      to insure he had no threat to his power.

      It took someone like George Bush with the guts to take him out.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  6. gosss

    Someone brought up Waco. David Koresh and his cult got what they deserved. Good riddance.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Raven

      When can babies being burned to death by the government be "What they deserved" ?
      Get a clue man.

      January 29, 2011 at 10:27 am | Report abuse |
    • mac316

      janet reno killed Americans and tortured them before they were killed AMERICANS not taliban you sound like a confused redneck but then again maybe you are the poster child for ignorance in America

      January 29, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  7. Raven

    The Right of the People to bear arms shall not be abridged.

    Oh wait, that's someone Else's country......

    January 29, 2011 at 10:26 am | Report abuse |
  8. Say What

    Where are all the women? I don't see any women protesting...

    Also, Iran's gov't comments are beyond stupid.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
  9. Philip

    This reminds me of the Rodney King riots in Los Angeles. Stores were being looted. Over 25 fires were started by the angry mobs. The National Guard was even called upon to enforce the curfew. And that was all about one single incident. Imagine what would happen if US citizens took to the streets concerning government corruption and crimes in general. I get the sense that people can feel this will happen soon.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
  10. 2Cents

    Islam for dummies OK AMERICAN PEOPLE THERE IS...........A BIG difference between Arab Muslims and Persian Muslims. Arab Muslims believe in extremism. PERSIAN Muslims hate that about Arab Muslims Persians are more peaceful and DON'T believe in terrorism! MAIN REASON why America is not in IRAN looking for Laden(I know this don't sound right but is true). Persian Muslims some type of strife with Arabs they are only joined by their religion. Doesn't mean that Persian Muslims don't hate Israel or America though.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Lawrence

      It was my believe that Arab Muslims (the majority) were "Sunni", and that the majority of Persian Muslims are "Shia". It has also been my believe that Sunni Muslims are more moderate in their believes and politics, while Shia Muslims are more radical in their believes/politics.

      January 29, 2011 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
  11. Jon

    Barry, are you paying attention? This is the direct result of what can be expected when the government becomes what you envision, dude. Maybe you need to reconsider that socialism-marxism thing you'rve got in mind.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Jon , it will all be ok, you gun obsessed dim wit.

      January 29, 2011 at 11:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      The reason this is happening is that nobody is running the country anymore..

      January 29, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Peter

      What are you talking about? What does Egyptian frustration with the same President for 30 years who runs essentially a dictatorship have to do with Obama's "vision" for the USA? You make no sense.

      January 29, 2011 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim Davis

      Protesters are turning on locals, looting and destroying and killing. Read the CNN Reports. Lawlessness and chaos and the Cops are overwhelmed. This is often when the criminal element comes into play. Who is goin' to protect your Wife, Children, Friends now ?? THIS IS EXACTLY WHY AMERICANS HAVE AND NEED THE RIGHT TO KEEP AND BARE ARMS.

      January 29, 2011 at 4:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matthew

      Hooray for short sleeved shirts and bare arms!

      January 29, 2011 at 8:50 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Philip

    @ Jim...suicide bomber vs. cluster bomb. you decide. And Jim, both you and I would fight with everything at our disposal if our hometown were invaded by foreigners, no matter the reason.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
  13. Liberty Queen

    The idea of the nation-state is no longer a valid construct for having a peaceful, prosperous human society whether it be Egypt, Tunisia or the United States.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Shawn

      If you disdain society so much; I suggest becoming a woodland hermit.

      January 29, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • conoclast

      You're unfortunately correct: true internationalism is the species' only chance to meaningfully confront climate change and yes, our ultimate extinction. The unfortunate part is that we're too busy bickering and in-fighting to see the writing on the wall. Sigh.

      January 29, 2011 at 3:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Matthew

      conoclast; are you being intentionally funny?

      January 29, 2011 at 8:51 pm | Report abuse |
  14. adam

    the world my be run by greed but is another word for it as well...human nature....people have to be able to be as motivated or unmotivated as they like...and may they reap what they sow.....good luck egypt....hope you dont turn into somilia or iran if you have your victory!

    January 29, 2011 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Tamara

      This Country has been under a dictatorship for 30 years. It is not human nature to have your rights as a human being taken from you and that is why there is uproar. When the free will in every aspect is taken conflict arises. These are poor people standing up for their rights as human beings and freedom for a democracy.

      January 29, 2011 at 12:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • chuck

      I agree somewhat with Tamara. However, it is sad to see people wanting democracy and the weapons being used against them are American made; M-60 tanks, M113 APCs and so on. Why do we sell a dictator and a potential enemy our equipment? Oh yeah, to keep the arms manufacturers making tons of money.l

      January 29, 2011 at 3:07 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Philip

    @rsr..these "rumblings" in Venezuela have been going on for a few years as they prepare for the coming invasion. Venezuala recently purchased 300,000,000 dollars worth of the newest AK assault rifles, the AN-94. Venezuela will not roll-over for the invaders. They will defend their homeland with the latest in weaponry and technology, not just roadside bombs.

    January 29, 2011 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
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