Egypt crisis: Guns fired in central Cairo early Thursday
Vehicles burn in front of Cairo's Egyptian Museum early Thursday as people protesting against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak face off against pro-Mubarak crowds.
February 2nd, 2011
10:35 PM ET

Egypt crisis: Guns fired in central Cairo early Thursday

Read full coverage of the unrest in Egypt updated continually by CNN reporters worldwide. Send your photos and video to iReport and see CNN in Arabic here. See also this strong roundup of timely, insightful views on the wave of upheaval in the Arab world.

[Update 5:35 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 10:35 p.m. ET Wednesday] The U.S. State Department has offered via Twitter an amended advisory to U.S. citizens in Egypt, saying now that those who wish to depart Egypt on a U.S. government-chartered flight should report to the airport "ASAP after the morning end of curfew."

Earlier, the department tweeted that such U.S. citizens should report to the airport immediately.

[Update 5:16 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 10:16 p.m. ET Wednesday] All remaining U.S. citizens who wish to depart Egypt on a U.S. government-chartered flight "should report to airport immediately," the U.S. State Department's Bureau of Consular Affairs said via Twitter minutes ago.

"Further delay is not advisable," the tweet said.

The State Department offers further information for U.S. citizens in Egypt on the department's website.

[Update 4:51 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 9:51 p.m. ET Wednesday] CNN's Ivan Watson, reporting on the gunfire that was heard in central Cairo minutes ago, said it took place along the barricaded edges of Tahrir Square, where anti-government protesters stayed through the night, facing off with pro-government people.

CNN personnel are seeing wounded being carried into Tahrir Square from the Egyptian Museum entrance to the square. Ambulances also are coming into the square.

Watson reported that he could hear both automatic gunfire and single shots, and that perhaps six young men - possibly wounded - were carried away. One appeared to have been shot in the abdomen, Watson reported.

[Update 4:33 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 9:33 p.m. ET Wednesday] Heavy gunfire reverberated in central Cairo early Thursday as anti- and pro-government protesters continued to face off at Tahrir Square.

[Update 3:43 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 8:43 p.m. ET Wednesday] Chartered flights evacuating U.S. citizens from Cairo will run again on Thursday, but after that, U.S. officials will assess whether the operation should be continued, the U.S. State Department said.

More than 1,900 U.S. citizens and their family members have left Egypt since an evacuation operation began Monday, according to State Department statement. The State Department has been providing passage for any U.S. citizen wishing to leave Egypt.

[Update 3:28 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 8:28 p.m. ET Wednesday] In the video below, CNN's Ivan Watson reports on the Molotov cocktails that have been thrown Wednesday night and Thursday morning between supporters of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and anti-Mubarak protesters outside Cairo's Egyptian Museum.

Watson reports of a "constant stream of wounded people being brought from these front lines between these two warring camps," and "people being treated along the sidewalks, underneath the street lamps ... by medics in lab coats."

"We've seen teams of opposition protesters who've been hard at work digging up the asphalt here in Tahrir Square to pull out stones to use as ammunition in the ongoing battles that have gone thoughout the day," Watson said early Thursday.

[Update 3:15 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 8:15 p.m. ET Wednesday] Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman has reiterated the government stance that the people have been heard, that they should go home and that they should stop demonstrating.

Protesters should respect the curfew and "enable people to return to their jobs and their daily lives, and to allow schools and universities to reopen," he said in a statement.

People protesting against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak still are in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Some of them have set up sheet-metal barricades outside the Egyptian Museum to hold off some pro-Mubarak crowds, who on Wednesday engaged in bloody clashes with the protesters. The pro-Mubarak people, who dwindled in number Wednesday night into early Thursday morning, still are lobbing Molotov cocktails at the protesters.

The Health Ministry has said three people died and 639 were injured in Wednesday's clashes in Cairo. CNN reporters at the square early Thursday morning say medics have been tending to the wounded in makeshift triage areas, and ambulances were arriving every few minutes. The Egyptian military is at the square and the museum but generally have stood by during the clashes, CNN reporters have said.

[Update 2:54 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 7:54 p.m. ET Wednesday] The video below is a roundup, from CNN's correspondents in Cairo, of what happened during Wednesday's demonstrations and clashes between anti-Mubarak protesters and people supporting the president.

[Update 2:21 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 7:21 p.m. ET Wednesday] At least three fires are burning outside Cairo's Egyptian Museum as people supporting Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak throw Molotov cocktails toward anti-Mubarak protesters, CNN's Anderson Cooper reports.

The number in the pro-Mubarak crowd has dwindled, and anti-Mubarak protesters - having slowly advanced behind tall sheets of metal - have controlled the area in front of the museum near Tahrir Square for the past few hours. Anti-Mubarak protesters have been banging on the metal into the night. Some of them are having to dodge Molotov cocktails thrown by the other side, Cooper said.

"Every time one of the Molotov cocktails thrown by the pro-Mubarak forces hits inside a crowd of people in the anti-Mubarak group, you can hear a cheer going up from the pro-Mubarak side," Cooper said.

Sustained automatic weapons fire also could be heard early Thursday around Cairo's Tahrir Square, the epicenter of nine days of protests calling for Mubarak's ouster.

[Update 2:15 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 7:15 p.m. ET Wednesday] Ambulances were arriving every few minutes early Thursday at a hospital about a 10-minute drive from Tahrir Square, scene of bloody mayhem in Cairo. Many of the wounded have injuries to the head. Others have stab wounds or were burned by Molotov cocktails.

[Update 1:15 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 6:15 p.m. ET Wednesday] A tree outside Cairo's Egyptian Museum appears to be on fire, and Molotov cocktails still ocassionally are being thrown between groups of protesters, CNN's Hala Gorani reports.

People protesting against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak earlier pushed back pro-Mubarak crowds from the street in front of the museum, near Tahrir Square. Though Molotov cocktails still are being thrown, the two sides don't appear to be in physical contact.

[Update 12:40 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 5:40 p.m. ET Wednesday] In the following video, CNN's Anderson Cooper reports on being attacked as he and colleagues tried to approach supporters of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak in Cairo on Wednesday.

[Update 12:16 a.m. Thursday in Cairo, 5:16 p.m. ET Wednesday] People protesting against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak appear to have pushed pro-Mubarak crowds away from Cairo's Egyptian Museum, though the two sides still are clashing, with Molotov cocktails being thrown, CNN's Anderson Cooper and Ivan Watson report. Molotov cocktails have been thrown for hours.

A few vehicles have been set on fire in front of the museum. The military is there, but is not doing much other than putting out fires in front of the museum, Watson said.

Hundreds, maybe thousands, of people are still in and around Tahrir Square, Watson reported. Medics are tending to some wounded people, and many protesters are wearing slings or bandages, Watson said.

[Update 11:58 p.m. Cairo, 4:58 p.m. ET] Three people died and 639 were injured in clashes Wednesday in Cairo's Tahrir Square, the Egyptian health minister told state-run Nile TV.

[Update 11:50 p.m. Cairo, 4:50 p.m. ET] The Cairo bureau chief for Al-Arabiya tells CNN that protesters beat two Al-Arabiya reporters and harassed a third in separate incidents Wednesday. In one incident in Giza, people stole an Al-Arabiya reporter's watch and beat him - he eventually was rescued and taken to a hospital, where he was in an intensive care unit, the bureau chief said. In a second incident, in Cairo's Tahrir Square, a reporter was "beaten like hell" after he identified himself as working for Al-Arabiya, the bureau chief said.

[Update 11:35 p.m. Cairo, 4:35 p.m. ET] Late Wednesday, anti-Mubarak protesters near the Egyptian Museum were appearing to be gaining more ground in their clashes with the president's supporters, CNN's Anderson Cooper reported. It remained unclear whether such confrontations were being repeated elsewhere.

A state-run Nile TV flashed a warning ordering people to adhere to a government-imposed curfew and clear out of Tahrir Square, but a crowd - though a less intense one - remained in the downtown plaza into the night.

In the following video, CNN's Fred Pleitgen reports that although the number of protesters outside Cairo's Egyptian Museum and Tahrir Square was decreasing late Wednesday, people still were tossing petrol bombs.

[Update 11:19 p.m. Cairo, 4:19 p.m. ET] Via Twitter, CNN's Nic Robertson reported: "Alexandria protesters say they plan big event on Friday, describe as the 'day of farewell to #Mubarak #egypt #jan25"

Robertson also tweeted that an Alexandria protest organizer said: "'This is the day that we hope Egypt can be finally free of #Mubarak, his dynasty & his thugs."

[Update 11:10 p.m. Cairo, 4:10 p.m. ET] The United States doesn't know the identity of "thugs" who attacked anti-government protesters Wednesday in Egypt, but others have identified them as "supporters of the government," U.S. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley told reporters.

"This was clearly an attempt at intimidating the protesters," Crowley said.

[Update 10:55 p.m. Cairo, 3:55 p.m. ET] Leaders from the United Nations, the United Kingdom and Germany have joined a chorus of condemnation of Wednesday's eruption of violence in Cairo.

[Update 10:27 p.m. Cairo, 3:27 p.m. ET] A journalist captured these images of people throwing rocks, brandishing knives and tending to injured people during protests in central Cairo, near Tahrir Square, on Wednesday:

[Update 10:07 p.m. Cairo, 3:06 p.m. ET] Some of the protesters on the streets of Cairo are now targeting journalists. A Belgian reporter on Wednesday was arrested, beaten and accused of being a spy by men in plain clothes in the central Cairo neighborhood of Choubra, and in Tahrir Square, journalists from the BBC, Al-Arabiya, ABC News and CNN - including CNN's Anderson Cooper and Hala Gorani - also were attacked.

Cooper said he was hit on the head by a protester. Gorani said she slammed against some gates and threatened after getting caught in a stampede of protesters and counter-protesters riding on camels and horses Wednesday morning.

[Update 9:45 p.m. Cairo, 2:45 p.m. ET] Egypt's health minister said 611 people were injured in clashes in Cairo's Tahrir square Wednesday, state-run television reported.

Earlier today, Ministry of Health officials told state TV that at least one member of the Egyptian security forces was and more than 400 people were wounded in clashes between pro- and anti-government demonstrators in Cairo. Most injuries were head wounds from thrown rocks, Egyptian Health Minister Ahmed Sameh Fareed said.

[Update 9:30 p.m. Cairo, 2:30 p.m. ET] A spokesman for the Egyptian Foreign Ministry says demonstrations by supporters of the Mubarak government are spontaneous and not orchestrated by the government. He also said the men on horseback and camels who rode into Tahrir Square earlier Wednesday were workers from the Pyramids whose business has been hurt by the unrest.

[Update 9:24 p.m. Cairo, 2:24 p.m. ET] CORRECTION:The blog entry below posted at 9:24 p.m. Cairo time incorrectly quoted a comment made by White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs Wednesday regarding violence between anti-government protesters and government supporters in Egypt. Gibbs said, "And it is - it is our hope that what we saw today we won't see tomorrow or Friday or into the weekend. Obviously, this is - this is going to take - this is not all going to be wrapped up in a matter of hours. It's going to take some time."

The violence witnessed Wednesday between anti-government protesters and government supporters in Egypt "won't end tomorrow, or Friday, or by the weekend," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said, adding: "This is not all going to be wrapped up in a matter of hours. It's going to take some time."

[Update 9:18 p.m. Cairo, 2:18 p.m. ET] CNN's Anderson Cooper describes how demonstrators are arming themselves as he watches gasoline bombs being lobbed from a rooftop.

[Update 9:05 p.m. Cairo, 2:05 p.m. ET] The State Department reported Wednesday that one flight for U.S. citizens was confirmed to have left Egypt. The department advises citizens who are having difficulty reaching the airport to stay indoors until demonstrations subside and make their way to the airport Thursday after curfew ends.

[Update 8:54 p.m. Cairo, 1:54 p.m. ET] Via Twitter, CNN's Nic Robertson reported: "This morning, Alexandria seemed on verge of going back to normal but early calm evaporated when aggressive pro-Mubarak groups showed up. ... Seeing more vigilante checkpoints around Alexandria. Protesters keen to avoid confrontation with pro-Mubarak groups."

[Update 8:31 p.m. Cairo, 1:31 p.m. ET] The time for a political transition in Egypt "is now" because the Egyptian people "need to see change," and a "meaningful transition must include opposition voices and parties being involved in this process as we move toward free and fair elections," White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Wednesday.

If the Egyptian government is instigating any of the violence occurring on the streets of Cairo, "it should stop immediately," Gibbs said.

A spokesman for Egypt's Foreign Ministry called on international leaders to butt out of the country's internal strife, telling CNN, "We know what is in the best interest of our society." Hossam Zaki said the clashes between pro- and anti-government demonstrators in Cairo reflect "the very raw and high emotions" of the Egyptian people, and "what is required now is for people to calm down."

[Update 8:17 p.m. Cairo, 1:17 p.m. ET] Peaceful protests have been taking place Wednesday in other neighborhoods of Cairo - Mohandessin, Heliopolis and Corniche - and the rural cities of El-Minya and El-Mahalla, CNN's Ben Wedeman reported. Most of the demonstrators in those places appear to be women, children, scholars and Coptic priests, he reported.

[Update 8:01 p.m. Cairo, 1:01 p.m. ET] More than 400 people have been wounded in clashes between pro- and anti-government demonstrators in Cairo, Egyptian Health Minister Ahmed Sameh Fareed told state television Wednesday. Most injuries were head wounds from thrown rocks, he said.

[Update 7:47 p.m. Cairo, 12:47 p.m. ET] At least one member of the Egyptian security forces was killed Wednesday in clashes in and around Cairo's Tahrir Square, a spokesman for the Ministry of Health, Abdel Rahman Shaheen, said on state television.

[Update 7:31 p.m. Cairo, 12:31 p.m. ET] CNN iReporter Hunter Moore, 26, is an American teacher in Cairo who is certified in CPR and first aid, and has been working with doctors and other volunteers to provide medical aid to injured protesters outside Tahrir Square. He says they are only treating the anti-government protesters; the pro-Mubarak protesters are getting so badly injured that they're being sent directly to the army for treatment. "All the medics and the doctors, they just don't want to see people killing one another," he said. He shot these photos Friday and earlier this week.

[Update 7 p.m. Cairo, noon ET] The army is not deliberately allowing the violence to continue, Egypt's finance minister says, it's been ordered not to hurt anyone.

[Update 6:55 p.m. Cairo, 11:55 a.m. ET] Numerous gasoline bombs were hurled on a street alongside Tahrir Square, starting small fires that were put out by military water cannon:

[Update 6:15 p.m. Cairo, 11:15 a.m. ET] A CNN journalist in Alexandria said pro-Mubarak demonstrators in Sidi Jaber Square left after a rally near the railway station, leaving only anti-Mubarak demonstrators still camping there. Journalists saw a small pro-Mubarak crowd demonstrating near Saad Zaghloul plaza with banners that said, "Yes, yes Mubarak" and "Where is the media to hear our voice?"

[Update 6:03 p.m. Cairo, 11:03 a.m. ET] CNN iReporter farahk8 sent in photos from among the Tahrir Square crowd during Tuesday's demonstrations. See them here.

[Update 5:56 p.m. Cairo, 10:56 a.m. ET] Video of the chaos in Tahrir Square from street level:

[Update 5:50 p.m. Cairo, 10:50 p.m. ET] CNN's Ivan Watson says opposition demonstrators inside Tahrir Square are surrounded by pro-Mubarak groups and fear a bloodbath after nightfall.

CNN's Ben Wedeman tweeted: "The only way out of Tahrir is thru army lines to the right of the mosque next to the Mogamaa." (The Mogamaa is a building that houses the Interior Ministry.) "People in Tahrir square begging Obama to intervene. They are terrified a bloodbath is about to occur."

[Update 5:35 p.m. Cairo, 10:35 a.m. ET] As darkness falls on Cairo, some faithful Muslims fall to their knees for evening prayers. Small fires from gasoline bombs, also known as Molotov cocktails, are quickly extinguished near the Egyptian Museum.

[Update 5:32 p.m. Cairo, 10:32 a.m. ET] CNN's Ben Wedeman, who was roughed up near Tahrir Square, tweeted: "I was not injured. Harassed? Yes. Appears the pro-government "demonstrators" have been given instructions to target press."

[Update 5:25 p.m. Cairo, 10:25 a.m. ET] CNN's Ivan Watson describes clashes taking place in front of the Egyptian Museum, home of Egypt's most precious antiquities, and how the military has been staying on the sidelines. Meanwhile, demonstrators dig up bricks from a construction site to use as weapons.

[Update 5:16 p.m. Cairo, 10:16 a.m. ET] White House spokesman Robert Gibbs told CNN, "We continue to watch the events very closely, and it underscores that the transition needs to begin now." Pressed on whether the administration is pulling further away from President Hosni Mubarak, Gibbs would only say that President Obama and other officials have made clear in recent days there needs to be "real change" in Egypt.

U.S. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley tweeted: "We are concerned about detentions and attacks on news media in #Egypt. The civil society that Egypt wants to build includes a free press."

[Update 5:05 p.m. Cairo, 10:05 a.m. ET] Here is a video summary of the day's events in Egypt so far.

[Update 4:59 p.m. Cairo, 9:59 a.m. ET] CNN iReporter Marianamin is an American living in a suburb an hour north of Cairo. She says her friends and neighbors "don't know who they want in, but they just know they want Mubarak out. ... Their thinking is he had 30 years to make changes. Even though he's done a lot of good for business ... for a lot of average Egyptians, he's just let them down." See marianamin's photo and description of her experience.

[Update 4:50 p.m. Cairo, 9:50 p.m.] Anderson Cooper witnessed a huge crowd of Mubarak supporters surge across a no-man's land dividing them from the anti-Mubarak crowd and overturn a military vehicle on the street as a huge roar went up. A large cloud of smoke arose at the east entrance to Tahrir Square, Anderson said.

[Update 4:38 p.m. Cairo, 9:38 a.m. ET] Tear gas was fired near the entrance to Cairo's Tahrir Square on Wednesday, according to CNN journalists who are there.

According to the latest information obtained by the United States, the Egyptian government wants to use police to quell the demonstrations in the capital, a senior U.S. official said. "That may be why you do not see the Army reacting," the official said.

The source also said that, at this point, the violence is largely limited to central Cairo and has not spread to other parts of the country. The official said the major issue for the United States is to try to achieve some measure of stability in Egypt.

[Update 4:30 p.m. Cairo, 9:30 a.m. ET] Here is some of the top video from the past hour in Egypt. Check back each hour for the latest video.

CNN's Ivan Watson describes the rapidly changing scene:

Men on horseback charge into Tahrir Square:

Protesters bloodied in clashes:

Crowd turns violent

CNN's Ben Wedeman sees "utter chaos":

[Update 4:23 p.m. Cairo, 9:23 a.m. ET] Some members of the Egyptian Army were believed to be entering Tahrir Square. Military vehicles were separating pro- and anti-Mubarak demonstrators, and several gasoline bombs had been tossed, CNN's Anderson Cooper said.

The sound of gunfire was heard in Tahrir Square, CNN's Fred Pleitgen said on Twitter. The square has been surrounded by pro-Mubarak demonstrators who have blocked in anti-government demonstrators and others at the site, CNN's Ben Wedeman said.

[Update 3:58 p.m. Cairo, 8:58 a.m. ET] The United States believes that the Egyptian police are returning to the streets in Cairo and will be the first responders to the violence that has erupted, rather than the Egyptian army, a senior U.S. official with direct knowledge of the unfolding situation in Egypt told CNN Wednesday. "We are seeing preliminary indications the police are coming back in," the official said, stressing that the situation remains highly volatile and uncertain.

[Update 3:51 p.m. Cairo, 8:51 a.m. ET] Men with rocks in their hands lined a metal wall and pounded out a rhythm. CNN's Ivan Watson said this appeared to be a show of support for rock-throwers on the front lines as pro- and anti-Mubarak sides faced off. Injured men were carried to a makeshift clinic on Tahrir Square.

CNN's Ben Wedeman said he overheard a panicked army officer say the situation was out of control and there was nothing the army could do to restore order.

[Update 3:42 p.m. Cairo, 8:42 a.m. ET] CNN's Anderson Cooper said he and his production crew were attacked by pro-Mubarak demonstrators earlier Wednesday. The attackers pushed and shoved the CNN crew and punched them in the head, he said, but no one was seriously hurt.

[Update 3:36 p.m. Cairo, 8:36 a.m. ET] A crew of men were seen on video using tools to break up pavement near Tahrir Square, while others carried loads of rocks, presumably to be thrown at the opposing demonstrators. It wasn't known which side they supported.

[Update 3:17 p.m. Cairo, 8:17 a.m. ET] As hundreds of men lined up to kneel and pray in the street, a crowd less than 100 feet away could be seen surrounding and beating a man.

[Update 2:58 p.m. Cairo, 7:58 a.m. ET] Men on horseback and camels charged into the crowd at Cairo's Tahrir Square, some of them lashing people on the ground with whips. Several were pulled off their animals and beaten, and the others retreated. CNN's Ivan Watson said the horseback riders came from the pro-Mubarak side of the demonstration.

[Update 2:49 p.m. Cairo, 7:49 a.m. ET] The stone-throwing and fighting at Tahrir Square have suddenly stopped and people are hugging and chanting "We are one," CNN's Ivan Watson reports from his vantage point.

[Update 2:46 p.m. Cairo, 7:46 a.m. ET] CNN's Amir Ahmed said he has seen people with blood flowing from their heads after being injured by rocks. The clashes appear to be spreading to streets near the square, he said.

[Update 2:32 p.m. Cairo, 7:32 ET] Demonstrators for and against President Hosni Mubarak are throwing rocks at each other on Tahrir Square, CNN's Ben Wedeman reports. Police are absent from the square and military personnel are hanging back, he says.

[Update 2:19 p.m. Cairo, 7:19 a.m. ET] Competing rallies were being held Wednesday in Alexandria, Egypt, with several thousand people protesting against President Hosni Mubarak and a few hundred others supporting him, CNN Correspondent Nic Robertson reported.

In Cairo, Mubarak supporters broke through a barricade that had separated them from anti-government protesters in Tahrir Square. The military surrounded the square but there was nothing between the two sides to keep them apart.

[Update 12:37 p.m. Wednesday in Cairo, 5:37 a.m. ET Wednesday]The U.S. State Department "ordered departure" evacuation starts Wednesday with chartered planes planned to start flying out nonemergency personnel, their relatives and any American citizens who wish to evacuate.

Internet access is back in at least parts of Egypt, CNN has confirmed

[Update 11:51 a.m. Wednesday in Cairo, 4:51 a.m. ET Wednesday] The Egyptian defense ministry on Wednesday urged the youth to go back home, saying "your message is received ... your demands became known."

"And we are here and awake to protect the country for you," a spokesman for the ministry said in a television broadcast. "Not by power but by the love to Egypt ... it is time to go back to normal life."

[Update 11:28 a.m. Wednesday in Cairo, 4:28 a.m. ET Wednesday] Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh said Wednesday he will not run for president nor hand over power to his son once his term ends in 2013. "No extension, no inheritance," he told parliament.

In recent weeks, thousands have taken to the streets in Yemen demanding the the kind of change that Egypt wants. Saleh has been in office for 32 years.

[Update 9:19 a.m. Wednesday in Cairo, 2:19 a.m. ET Wednesday] Shortly after sunrise Wednesday, Cairo's Tahrir Square was already packed with demonstrators - including families staying in tents with children.

Some demonstrators chanted in favor of Mubarak early Wednesday, calling the press "traitors" and "agents."

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said the government would provide an emergency flight  for Australians affected by the unrest in Egypt. The flight will depart Cairo on Wednesday, according to a statement from her

British carrier BMI says it has organized an extra flight to help British nationals get back to the United Kingdom from Egypt.

The  British Foreign Office is sending a charter flight to Cairo on Wednesday to fly back British citizens with no other way to get  home, the office said.

Egypt's national airline, EgyptAir, canceled flights until 10 a.m. Wednesday (3 a.m. ET), according to state television.

Greece has sent  military aircraft to evacuate 215 Greeks from Egypt,  the official Athens News Agency said.

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soundoff (1,350 Responses)
  1. WeirdMN

    CNN's comments filters are over filtering. I wonder how many comments are being trashed? Come on CNN, Freedom of Speech is just as important as Freedom of the Press.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Musihunter

      Anderson cooper and Joy Behar must be the filter feeders today

      February 2, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  2. Steve

    What a dilema...a guy that's been good to us for years, the people hate.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Musihunter

      Just like Charlie Sheen, if you pay them enough money, they will be good to you. We give Egypt/Mubarak 1.6 billion a year.

      February 2, 2011 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
  3. Moriah

    I just saw one of the bravest things. Some young man had obviously found himself on the opposing side. A few men from what seemed to be that same opposing side were still trying to protect him from the violent protesters. Then a woman stepped in as if it were her own son and protected him with the others. At a point the other protective men seemed to push her away for her own safety. But to watch that one woman protecting that young man was incredible. I can't even keep track of who is pro or opposing, but that was an incredible act of bravery. I see clusters of people who AREN'T violent and you know it's just a time bomb waiting to go off. Horrible.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  4. erin seabury

    Is the situation in Alexandria escalating like it is in Cairo?

    February 2, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • yasser

      yes since last night, right before Obama's speach

      February 2, 2011 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
  5. yasser

    The picture shows a group of thugs with body armor throwing rocks and carry rods (Mubarak secret services) at another group that are raising their hand to stop any clash

    February 2, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
  6. Common Sense

    I am sympathetic to both sides on this.

    Mukarak is definitely a dictator ruling with the proverbial "iron fist." But compared to most of the middle East, Egypt under this control is fairly liberal, pro-western, not anti-Israel, and stable.

    This popular uprising we are seeing is asking for "democracy" - which, of course, is generally a good thing. But Middle East "democracy"does not resemble our sense of democracy - it is simply majority rule with no rights or protections for anyone in the minority. (The case of two wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner). Under "democractic" control and with radical Islam's influences, I fear Egypt might resemble 1979 Iran and quickly become one of the Middle East's latest theocracies - anti-western, anti-Israel, anti-liberalization. Throw in Egypt's control of the Suez Canal and that quickly becomes a disaster.

    It's a tough call - not sure who to "root for" on this one.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:34 am | Report abuse |
    • yourfeararetrue

      Commonsense, even the holy books which I have my opinion about, have mentioned that all middle eastern countries shall slowly have their own rulers, who shall work together against US and Europe, they shall populate in large nos., overthrow US, send suicide bombers, and terrorists to EU and US, and all this is for the freedom from oppression of the west on the rest of the world including Africa, middle east, paki, Latin america...., so stop fearing cause its going to happen.

      February 2, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Afaf Roubi

      Sure Egypt may be better off than other Arab countries but the bar is extremely low. Young ppl in Egypt are educated, ready to work and cannot find jobs. The standard of living is very low!!
      You are basically saying they have no right to stand up for themselves because other ppl are worse off!! What better reason do they need in order to justify their protests.
      It is time to end all brutal regimes in the Middle East. Egypt is leading the way now...

      February 2, 2011 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Joe1970

      This current clash is evidence of how wrong CNN has gotten this story. The clash is representative of the true silent majority finally asserting themselves. The protesters might have started with good intentions, but it is clear that the current support for the anti Mubarak protesters is not as inncent as the reports of CNN suspect and have reported. Common people are going hungry. The majority of Egyptians live day to day, literally. They use the cash they have earned in the morning to buy the food their families will eat the next day. Now food supplies are running out. People are out of money and they cannot even get at their savings if they have any because the banks have been closed for over a week. The majority of people are tired of this movement as they watch their families go hungry.
      The anti government protesters have won. But they do not disburse because those behind them are trying to take advantage of the situation to put the Muslim Brotherhood into power in a rush because they know they would not win in an orderly process.
      CNN is reporting that the situation was peaceful until this point and the pro government or "pro-stability" protestors are causing the instability. What CNN is not reporting is that the majority of the country's populus is living in terror behind barracaded doors. The streets are lawless. The criminal element is having a field day. Common people could only go so long before they needed to act.

      February 2, 2011 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
    • fatma

      Mubarak is killing people in Tahrir Sqaure. United states went to Iraq for Democracy and to free the Iraqi People. Where is the United States today and Mubarak is tending to kill all the protesters in Tahrir Square. what is going on in Tahrir Square is a crime against Humanity. God bless you Egypt and your People. Victory is soon.

      February 2, 2011 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      Fatma: Sorry but Bush isnt President here anymore. We learned our lesson in Iraq. We went there to free people then they blamed us for the problems.

      February 2, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • HUMAN

      WHERE IS MR, OBABMA???????????????????????????????????? HE NEEDS TO STOP THIS MASSCARE

      February 2, 2011 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • HUMAN


      February 2, 2011 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • Common sense FAIL..

      "Egypt under this control is fairly liberal, pro-western, not anti-Israel, and stable."

      The reasons you mentioned have either nothing to do with the will of the people of that nation or their INTERESTS!. You are plainly being an overtly selfish jerk who doesn't care as long as he gets to dine at olive garden every friday. My advice to you, stick to the playstation and let the people in egypt decide like the people in america do – DEMOCRATICALLY!!

      February 2, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • HUMAN


      February 2, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      Isn't it strange to you that Obama and the Iranian government both back these rioters and protestors? Obama only pretended to support the protestors as he wants the votes of Muslim americans in 2012. He did this as a campaign move (throw Mubarack under the bus) so he could gain the votes of far left muslim americans who support this radical islamic revolution in egypt and palestine liberation. Its too bad say what you want about Mubarack but he kept the peace there for 30 years. He is more of a hero than a villain. The muslim brotherhood (a quasi-terrorist organization) who supported this attempted overthrow of egypt's government are the real villains.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Frankly Speaking..

      @ Novembereign

      Thats because we went there without their permission..

      February 2, 2011 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
    • CS

      You are correct. Better Mukarak than radical Muslims!

      February 2, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |

      IT's not a fight between anti and pro .it's a clear oppression between peaceful demonstrators and brutal police force wearing civilian clothes.I do not why Obama who speaks of democarcy keeping backing this criminal dictator.Mubarak should be proscuted under internationl law for crimes against humainty

      February 2, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Dev

      One important factor to remember is that Egypt relies heavily on tourism and the Suez canal for its economy to function. I have a hard time seeing Egypt become a country that would be as hostile to the west as Iran is. Iran sits on top of trillions of dollars of natural resources and can basically afford to do whatever it wants, kind of like Venezuela is under Chavez. If Egypt decided to become a closed society hostile to the West it would mean that all the white people with all their money would stop going there and the economy would cease to function and basically bring about another revolt. I do think that the best thing Mubarak can do is to leave now and set up an interm government. There seems to be a new era emerging in the Middle East and I think it would serve the US and Israel well to treat Arabs with more respect. However, I do not believe that Egypt is in the same economic position as Iran to be hostile to the West, even in the Islamic world money ultimately controls everything and I doubt that Egypt would throw away its huge tourism industry for a radical ideology.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • zeinab


      February 2, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      Oppression of what? If the people dont like Egypt's they are free to come and go as they please? Its not like its Iran where no one is allowed to leave (not yet anyway LOL).

      February 2, 2011 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • diaspora

      The WEST has created those monster regimes and been silent for decades on their abuses for decades. The result as in Tunisia, a bloodbath, more killing and unrest.
      Where are the true lovers of democracy. where are the advocates of freedom of choice.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      Whether they are police or not the opposition is the opposition anyway.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • HUMAN


      February 2, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
    • specter619

      the time is now Iran!

      February 2, 2011 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      Funny you dont mention the violence would stop if the protestors just went home and stopped trying to make trouble and problems and stage a revolt. Its not Obama's responsibility or the USA. If we do nothing you blame us if we intervene you blame us and attack us. Mubarack agreed to step down in September anyway. The people got their elections and they will have a democracy. I have a feeling the organizers of this protest the muslim brotherhood simply wont be happy until they bring in their own leader and forcibly place him in power (not very democratic).

      February 2, 2011 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Adnan

      Why we have fear that when ever Muslim will vote it will be against west? Did west pushed Muslims too hard and kept their dictators on them is thatwhy??. Also why Isreal is the democracy when each citizen has to take Oath to the alliance to their Jewish Religion.?? Let the Islamic government comein power in Egypt and be fair with them in trade and others they will be fine with you. If west start imposing sanctions and asked to favor their wars and policies which are unjust that will escalate deep crack in relationships.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Freemason

      @ Novembereign...if Egyptians want Muslim Brotherhood, then let it be, if they want a Secular party, then let it be...this is not your business...

      February 2, 2011 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
    • EM

      U.S. Democracy is a joke... and a SCAM, and the world is seeing it. Its a ploy to make people think that we actually have a say in our govt. The truth is American democracy has been hijacked by corporate american eliteists who fund the pockets of those that make US laws (state or Federal, or WTO& NWO) and control USA. Its simply rich vs poor... again. You want your country back people? Look at the people in Egypt for a clue on how to do it...

      February 2, 2011 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
    • Jane

      Its sad to see how many people on here actually believe Obama, or any US President, would intervene in a conflict just to help people being slaughtered by their own government. We support many, many violent dictators. The only way we're sending in troops is if we can build a new government of our own choosing. Also, hopefully the Egyptian people will finally realize that their army is not interested in protecting them. This attack was obviously planned at least several days ago.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:33 am | Report abuse |
  7. Dallas

    @Jan25: Read a little closer. I'm advising that when you're able to choose, get all the facts first before you support the replacement.

    And I too am more than a little amused when foreign governments cry for help from the U.S., scream and accuse when we do nothing, then when we finally do intercede, blame the U.S. for the end result. Not only is the U.S. blamed but all of western society seems to take the heat.


    February 2, 2011 at 10:35 am | Report abuse |
  8. emad

    The attackers have tear gas bombs written on it " MADE IN ISRAEL"

    February 2, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • arthurr

      yeah-YOU WISH!!!

      February 2, 2011 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
    • Gigi


      February 2, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      The IED's and bombs and suicide bombs that the militants will bring in from outside will be made in places like Iran.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
  9. Cesar

    Interesting how so many say it is the police who are the protesters for Mubarak, when we all know that there are not that many police-how illogical. @Arab, I trust you all will not put a fanatic hater religious nut into power?

    February 2, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  10. hanamichael

    Guys all what the protesters asked for was fullfilled , why don't they go home now , we lost 200 billions those couple of days , no work , no police , no safety , nothing...
    The man will leave so soon , and the army forces will back it up . so why is this all for???
    If they go home , life will return to normal and free elections will take place eventually.
    And I will be able to freely choose who ever I want , but now they are just enforcing what they want on all the rest.
    Is this democracy?????

    February 2, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Beth

      I hope for Egypt's sake it is the beginnings of democracy, but no, you are right, it is not democracy yet. But the people have for so long not been heard, perhaps they are still enchanted with speaking out and don't want to stop even though they have already said what they have to say.

      My opinion is that Egypt needs new political parties so that the people will have true choices in the coming election. It will take months to organize these parties, so a delay could be a good thing. However, they must be made legal. I am waiting to see whether or not that happens; if it does not I will conclude the promises of reform are insincere.

      The world watches, waits, and prays for Egypt. May the 21st be your century of greatness.

      February 2, 2011 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  11. AJ

    where is the united nations? where are the loyal egyptian leaders like Amr Mossa? Why is there a united nations since it doesn't help innocent protesters?!! Many questions & no answers from the world! Is there any law in this world to protect the weak & the right ones?! Because there is nothing in this world or universe that will shut all our voices; we present what is right! We the innocent people of egyptian don't want Hosni Mubarak, he is the reason of the innocent people being killed. He should go to trial for all the crimes he is doing. If there are humans out there who read this, shame on you. Leaders, shame on you! You should regret the day you became a leader & not help innocent ones or even take the right track & do what is right. Shame on this world & shame on the united nations! God be with you innocent egyptians. I pray for you & proud of you. You are a nation that stood up for yourselves because the world won't stand for you.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:36 am | Report abuse |
  12. freedom now

    I wonder what would have happened if the protesters had 2nd ammendment rights? And the dictator didn't have the ability to shut down the internet.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Novembereign

      Conan O'Brien pointed out if the internet was on more people would probably stay home.

      February 2, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
    • chris

      I think it's obvious that the people who initiated this protest initiated a peaceful demonstration, so I image the same thing that happened without the 2nd amendment would happen with it. Peaceful protesters would peacefully gather to protest and ignorant thugs that can not express their opinions through knowledge, courage and speech would bring weapons ( guns in the US, and knives and clubs in Egypt ).

      February 2, 2011 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
  13. hanamichael

    There are millions of wise and moderate moslems in Egypt.
    Why don't they give them the chance to talk.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
  14. greenhands

    Mubarak go to hell.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
  15. Hawkeye1010

    Judging from how some of those folks are throwing rocks, they could easily shore up the rotation for the Pirates, Royals or Astros.

    February 2, 2011 at 10:40 am | Report abuse |
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