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. GPS

    In a country of 82 million people a few thousand protesters / muslim radicals / looters / dirt bags, should indicate that this is not as wide a problem as the media is portraying. Obama, stay out of Egypt's business!! You had nothing of substance to say yesterday or today!! Everything that is being undertaken by the Eygptian Police and Military is nothing different than how you would handle this same crisis in the United States!! Mubarak should wipe out these so called protesters and move on!!! This is not the same situation as what occured in Iran last year.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Guest2391

      This is not a handful of radicals. This is a widespread sentiment among the people. I was in Cairo two weeks ago, and I had so many people talk to me about their political situation (the events in Tunisia were happening). Over and over, I heard how things were going to change soon. Most of the common people in Egypt have never voted, nor do they know anyone that's ever voted, so the government is a true representation of the minority.

      January 29, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  2. marshall

    The U.S. Government should be ashamed of its apparant double standards. We are siding with a dictator just because he is a so called ally.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • GPS

      Marshall the relationship that the US has with Mubarak is nothing new. These types of relations have existed between countries and leaders since the beginning of civilization. Mubarak may be an A$$ Hole, but he is our A$$ Hole. Our relationship with Mubarak, although many people don't see it or understand it has brought a degree of stability to the Middle East for years.

      January 29, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
  3. Asghar

    the joke is ,these stupid dictators up to their demise they claim they got 99.99% of the people's vote or support.
    Sadam Hussein,Ben Ali,Mubarak, Bashar Asad,Ahmadinejad,and all the pathetic kings in middle east.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
  4. adam

    ¨America does not have friends, America has interests¨ Henry Kissinger Mubarak is no friend of the USA and the 2 sides disargee on more then they agree on...US presidents for years and years have tried to convince Mubarak to start social reform to benefit the people of egypt in order to aviod exactly what is happening now...the 2 sides just found use for each other...that is all......the USA is responsible for the USA and the interests of American people..that is all......and yes as such a influence nation it does effect others.......but thats like having a meth addiction and saying its 100% the fault of the first person to sell you meth....take responsibility...and well done are you!

    January 29, 2011 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  5. Roman, Butler PA

    You want the truth, then read this blog. Salvation.
    Then you will know why the world is in chaos.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
    • @BamBam

      AAHHHH!! Take your cr@ppy religion to the belief blogs or to a church but seriously! This isn't ...b.c. any more and people don't want to see one of you people shouting in our face everywhere we turn!

      January 29, 2011 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Roman, Butler PA

      And, you wonder why chaos is reigning. You have no idea who you are speaking to. But you're going to find out real soon

      January 29, 2011 at 12:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nick

      Ok nutcase, why don't you make yourself useful and go over to Afghanistan or Iraq. All of the religious zealots posting about end of days BS need to get a life. You're working on the same level of stupidity and ignorance of any Muslim extremist.

      January 29, 2011 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Nsain

      LOL, did he just threaten you Bam?

      January 29, 2011 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
  6. bama

    Maybe it is time for him to retire, he is 82 after all. He should be enjoying his life at 82.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
  7. Super G

    I wonder how the countries of the world would get along if our relations were not poisoned by religion. Maybe John Lennon had a point.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:28 am | Report abuse |
    • myklds

      @Super G...exactly he got a point.......on ti-tling it "Imagine", coz it's the best it can gets.

      January 29, 2011 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • myklds


      January 29, 2011 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Bob

    Has anyone thought to ask what the state the Egyptian riots would be in if held in one our our gun toting, concealed weapon ok-ing, gun shows are good because you don't need a background check kind of shoot 'em up states? Politics of this crisis aside, just what would be going on if everyone had a gun?

    January 29, 2011 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  9. Roman, Butler PA

    January 29, 2011 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Nsain

      So Butler, having dinner with Fred P later?

      January 29, 2011 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
  10. McMurdo

    Mubarak"s answer is to appoint a VP who is responsible for the intimidation, detainment and torture of Egyptian dissidents. Smooth move Hosni! That will really win over the hearts and minds of the people.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:30 am | Report abuse |
  11. UFO2012

    Have you ever wondered why ISRAEL is so quite :-)))))

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

      ...........Did you mean.."quiet"?. For trhe same reason Palestine and Iran are. It's not difficult to figure out.......

      January 29, 2011 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
  12. JeanVa

    No pun intended but it seems the protesters are wasting their time. I assure you everything would return to square one pretty soon. As for those saying Saudi is next. Let me just inform them that this will never ever happen in Saudi Arabia. No one would even have the mind to shout A on the streets. He would be ran over by a car before he knows it.

    January 29, 2011 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  13. UFO2012

    Is ISRAEL looking for a new friend who could support all his killing of innocent Palestinians? I think I see ISRAEL is becoming more and more isolated and finally will understand that so far 5 countries around the world recognize the Palestinian state and there will be more and more in near future. So the end comes to this " ISRAEL you must BEHAVE " !!!!!!!

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

      @UFO2012...Since when did Israel become noisy of other nation's business? For sure, you've just landed here on earth; directly to that chair in front of that PC; punched that dusty keyboard; posted a comment here; and look like a fool. You should have done a lil research to avoid that. Oh....wait it's still 2011, you don't belong this year. Perhaps it's the reason why you're posting nonsense. Better reset that time clock and go back to end of days.

      January 29, 2011 at 5:12 pm | Report abuse |
  14. conoclast

    How's all that hopey-changey stuff workin' out for ya, Egypt?

    January 29, 2011 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
  15. Cesar

    None of you are listening!! We need more Pepsi and potato chips. America is in a crisis. God help us!!!!!

    January 29, 2011 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
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