Egypt crisis: Mubarak's son Gamal among party leaders to resign, state TV says
Anti-government protesters rally Saturday in front of army tanks near Cairo's Tahrir Square.
February 5th, 2011
08:00 PM ET

Egypt crisis: Mubarak's son Gamal among party leaders to resign, state TV says

Read full coverage and examine a timeline 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 3:00 a.m. in Cairo, 8:00 p.m. ET] New glimpses emerged Saturday into the sensitive diplomatic strategy the Obama administration is using to help bring about a transition in which Mubarak himself helps to dismantle his own power structure.

U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, speaking at the Munich Security Conference, urged support for the man Mubarak named to carry out that
transition, Vice President Omar Suleiman.

"There are forces in at work in any society," Clinton said, "in particular in one that is facing these kinds of challenges, who will try to derail or overtake the process to pursue their own specific agenda, which is why I think it's important to support the transition process announced by the Egyptian government actually headed by now-Vice President Omar Suleiman."

[Update 1:15 a.m. in Cairo, 6:15 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama emphasized the importance of an "orderly, peaceful transition" to a government that is "responsive to the aspirations of the Egyptian people." In phone calls with foreign leaders Saturday, Obama also urged "credible, inclusive negotiations between the government and the opposition," according to the White House.

[Update 12:30 a.m. in Cairo, 5:30 p.m. ET] U.S. Vice President Joe Biden spoke with Suleiman by phone Saturday and asked about negotiations Suleiman had with several opposition leaders and intellectuals about Egypt's future, the White House said.

"He stressed the need for a concrete reform agenda, a clear timeline, and immediate steps that demonstrate to the public and the opposition that the Egyptian government is committed to reform," according to the White House.

Biden also called for the immediate release of journalists and activists
who have been detained without cause, the White House said.

[Update 11:45 p.m. in Cairo, 4:45 p.m. ET] It's just after midnight in Cairo and anti-Mubarak protesters are still standing their ground in Tahrir Square in defiance of a government curfew for the 12th night in a row, CNN's Ivan Watson reports.

[Update 11:45 p.m. in Cairo, 4:45 p.m. ET] Israeli President Shimon Peres defended the Egyptian president, saying, "In spite of all the attacks against President Mubarak, I know him for many years, throughout his presidency and I accredit him as one of the persons who saved many lives by preventing war in the Middle East, who saved lives of Egyptians, of Arabs, of Israelis, by not allowing to renew a war."

[Update 10:45 p.m. in Cairo, 3:45 p.m. ET] Anti-government rallies outside of Egypt continued Saturday in major cities worldwide, including New York, Washington, Atlanta, Paris, France, and the West Bank. In Washington, iReporter Inga Lukaviciute captured video of a group of loud but peaceful protesters carrying signs and Egyptians flags as they marched from the Egyptian embassy to the White House chanting anti-Mubarak slogans.

In Paris, France, iReporter Lawrence Langner took pictures of the thousands gathered at Place de la Republique amid a strong police presence. Their message also focused Mubarak's removal.

[Update 10:00 p.m. in Cairo, 3:00 p.m. ET] Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak "remains utterly critical in the days ahead as we sort our way toward the future," and must stay in office, President Barack Obama's point man for Egypt, Frank Wisner, said Saturday at the Munich Security Conference in Germany.

Wisner is the diplomatic official who delivered a message from President Barack Obama's administration to Egypt's leadership this week.

In response, U.S. State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley said that
Wisner is no longer acting in any official capacity.

"We have great respect for Frank Wisner and we were deeply appreciative of his willingness to travel to Egypt last week. He has not continued in any official capacity following the trip. The views he expressed today are his own. He did not coordinate his comments with the U.S. government," Crowley said.

[Update 7:46 p.m. in Cairo, 12:46 p.m. ET] Among those submitting their resignations from leadership positions in Egypt's National Democratic Party were Gamal Mubarak, President Hosni Mubarak's son, state television reported. Housam Badrawi was appointed as the new secretary-general of the national party, replacing Safwat el Sherif, as well as head of the strategy and politics committee, replacing Gamal Mubarak.

"As the president has repeatedly said, Egyptians will be the ones that decide how this transition occurs," said Tommy Vietor, spokesman for the U.S. National Security Council, on Gamal Mubarak's resignation. "We welcome any step that provides credibility to that process."

"We view this as a positive step toward the political change that will be necessary, and look forward to additional steps," an administration official said.

President Hosni Mubarak remains head of state.

[Update 7:20 p.m. in Cairo, 12:20 p.m. ET] Members of the general secretariat of Egypt's ruling National Democratic Party submitted their resignations, state TV reported. It did not confirm an earlier report that President Hosni Mubarak had resigned from his party post.

[Update 6:46 p.m. in Cairo, 11:46 a.m. ET] President Hosni Mubarak has resigned as head of the National Democratic Party, along with other members of the party's general secretariat, state TV reported.

[Update 6:03 p.m. in Cairo, 11:03 a.m. ET] The U.S. State Department said it was operating one flight Saturday to evacuate U.S. citizens from Egypt. It was headed for Athens, Greece. There was no word on how many Americans would be transported.

[Update 5:58 p.m. in Cairo, 10:58 a.m. ET] Amnesty International is urging an investigation into the detention of 35 journalists and human rights activists documenting the crisis in Egypt. Two who were detained are staff members for the human rights group. They were freed after spending two days in military custody.

[Update 5:02 p.m. in Cairo, 10:02 a.m. ET] Talks between newly appointed Vice President Omar Suleiman and a few opposition groups started Saturday.

At a news conference Saturday, Interior Ministry spokesman Ismail Othman said, "The army remains neutral and is not taking sides because if we protect one side we will be perceived as bias ... our role is to prevent clashes and chaos as we separate the opposing groups."

Egyptian courts will return to work Sunday, the justice minister announced on state TV Saturday.

[Update 4:48 p.m. in Cairo, 9:48 a.m. ET] Khaled Serri Seyam, the head of the Egyptian stock market, told the official Egyptian news agency that the decision to reopen the market on Monday is now canceled and that the stock market will stay closed for now.

[Update 4:09 p.m. in Cairo, 9:09 a.m. ET] The German diplomat who said there was an assassination attempt against Egypt's new vice president has retracted his comments. "I was led to believe that we had a confirmed report but in fact we didn't," he told CNN. He added the information he received was based on an unsubstantiated source.

[Update 3:36 p.m. in Cairo, 8:36 a.m. ET] Opposition demonstrators formed a human chain to block  Egyptian army tanks from entering the anti-government redoubt in Cairo's Tahrir Square, CNN's Ivan Watson reported. This is the first sign of tension between the demonstrators and the Egyptian military since the protests erupted, but the standoff lasted just a short time, CNN's Arwa Damon reported.

[Update 2:49 p.m. in Cairo, 7:49 a.m. ET] Amid widespread criticism of Egypt for attacks on journalists, the country's prime minister on Saturday said there have been "no instructions to hinder the coverage of the media in the Tahrir area." "I made clear that they have full freedom to do anything they want," Ahmed Shafiq said.

[Update 2:26 p.m. in Cairo, 7:26 a.m. ET] Egypt's El Arish natural gas pipeline to Jordan has been closed after an attack set it on fire, the head of Jordan's national electricity company told CNN on Saturday. Ghaleb Al Maabreh said repairs will take at least a week, and will be paid for by Jordan.

[Update 2:17 p.m. in Cairo, 7:17 a.m. ET] Protesters formed a new opposition group Saturday to represent anti-government demonstrators gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square. Mohamed ElBaradei's Association for National Change and a leftist Tagammu party leader announced the new group of 10 people, which includes ElBaradei, Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohamed Beltagy and liberal Ghad party leader Ayman Nour. The newly formed opposition group is calling for Mubarak's resignation and the right to demonstrate peacefully.

[Update 2 p.m. in Cairo, 7 a.m. ET] An assassination attempt was made on Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman, the host of the Munich Security Conference said Saturday. During a plenary session at the conference, the host Ambassador Wolfgang Ischinger said several people were killed in the attack.

Details about the incident, including when and where it happened, were not immediately known but U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said at the conference that the news of the assassination attempt reflects the challenges of restoring stability in Egypt. The vice president, appointed last week amid widespread cries for President Hosni Mubarak's ouster, has been working to initiate a government transition, and Clinton said it's important to support the Suleiman-led process.

[Update 11:49 a.m. in Cairo, 4:49 a.m. ET] Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei was in Cairo's Tahrir Square late Saturday morning. ElBaradei's National Association for Change movement told CNN he will make his way to a podium to speak to crowds.

[Update 10:49 a.m. in Cairo, 3:49 a.m. ET] President Hosni Mubarak met Saturday with Egypt's minister of finance, oil, trade and industry at the presidential palace Saturday, state-run Nile TV reported.

[Update 10:20 a.m. in Cairo, 3:20 a.m. ET] An Egyptian state-run news agency reported a gas pipeline has been set on fire in a suspected terrorist attack in Al-Arish.

A crowd of protesters gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square remained relatively peaceful mid-morning Saturday after occasional street battles broke out in the city overnight. The scene appeared calmer than in recent days, and traffic appeared to come back to life in Cairo.

Heavy gunfire broke out early Saturday morning around Tahrir Square.

Five human rights activists, including two from Amnesty International and one from Human Rights Watch, were released Friday by Egyptian military police, the two groups said in statements. They were among numerous people - including international reporters and Egyptian lawyers and activists - detained on Thursday in Cairo. Some of those detained remain in custody, according to the two groups' statements.

The death toll from the violent clashes in Cairo's Tahrir Square has reached 11, Egypt's Health Ministry reported Friday.

The U.S. Embassy in Egypt and the U.S. State Department issued a statement Friday indicating that several embassy vehicles were stolen in Cairo on January 28. The statement was in response to an online video that showed a white diplomatic van running into anti-government protesters near Tahrir Square. The joint statement said, "We have heard reports of their (stolen U.S. vehicles) use in violent and criminal acts."

A security force accompanied by a "gang of thugs" stormed the office of the Muslim Brotherhood's news website Friday and arrested the journalists, technicians and administrators present there, the group said on its website. Witnesses later saw those arrested taken to the Interior Ministry, the group said.

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soundoff (103 Responses)
  1. 0BAMA illuminati traitor

    The riots in Egypt organized by Obama, Iran and the Muslim Brotherhood
    Mohamed Mustafa ElBaradei the Iranian traitor , the Muslim Brotherhood and Iran want to rule Egypt.

    They want Repression of women, prohibition of education, high unemployment, radical Islam as Iran, Somalia and Afghanistan under Taliban rule...

    As James Earl Carter supported Iranian Islamic Revolution of 1979, so does today Barack Hussein Obama II... SINCE 1979 USA HELP IRAN TO TAKE CONTROL IN Middle East !

    What is the condition in Iran 1979 before the islamic Revolution and today in:

    Human rights ?
    oppression of women ?
    freedom of expression ?

    Today if woman Wearing Jeans or Without a head covering in Iran she will be Punished...!

    All the Opposition parties in Egypt Agreed to the government's changes and for new elections this year Except the Muslim Brotherhood !

    After some months the Islamic extremists will take the POWER and people will be in worst situation then before...

    Do the people in Iran, Somalia, Afghanistan want the Extremists to rule ?

    February 5, 2011 at 10:39 am | Report abuse |
    • duderino

      clearly your not the sharpest knife in there drawer. you actually think someone is ruling in somalia. ha.

      February 5, 2011 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Person

    Israel is becoming a nation. http://nopolicestate.blogspot.com/2011/01/egypt_29.html

    February 5, 2011 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
  3. Nadia Nour

    Where is the Int'l Press integrity, objectivity,intelligence?Do not wonder if you are being slammed out.
    Egypt is 80 MM Cairo is 20+MMis What is Tahrir Sq.?Have you never covered demonstrations in Egypt before???Check your records.You want to create a Revolution in Egypt ,well you succeed a week or 3 ,and that is it.
    Egyptians are no fool.
    Mubarak is a patriot,a military who kept PEACE in the Nile Valley for 30 years. How can you feed 1MM newly born every 14 months? US you want to help give Non-military aid. Has the US had any luck in Irak,Lebanon,Afganistan ,IRAN ?
    Mubarak has brutally repressed Terrorism,is that bad?The Moslem Brotherhood has been very active socially and culturally for the past 30 years,is'nt better that way?
    Mubarak is leaving but with dignity. Any one with his charisma to relay ?NO. El Baradei has no program ,no political backing ,he is press created character.He is old , and lack guts, unlike Mubarak. Has El Bardie lived in Egypt in the past 30 years ?
    A transition is in the making in Egypt ,and was sheduled,all Egyptians have to participate "old government" supporters pro Mubarak," new government "supporters,Moslems and Copts.No interference should be tolerated neither from Israel nor the US-EU nor Iran,nor the Pope ,nor Quatar . Leave Egypt in Peace once and for all.

    February 5, 2011 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  4. Mark

    CNN is not giving the world the information it needs. Yes there are many people demonstrating. But what would sudden pure democracy bring without quarantees of liberal reform and secular freedom? The views of the Egytian people are far too pro-war, antisemetic, anti-American, anti-religious tolerance. Democratic elections with no checks and balances would lead to a far worse regime than the one in power now, a government dominated by the Muslim Brotherhood and other religious bigots, Jew haters and people who hate Western style liberal democracy. In other words: One man, one vote, one election.

    February 5, 2011 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
  5. Daniel

    When crises like this happen in other parts of the world, I always reflect that I live in the best nation on Earth – the U.S. might be divided politically, but we are certainly more civil than any other backwards sand-eating nation on Earth. Why doesn't anyone else understand that America has and always has gotten it right(?). Their nations will continue to suffer, while America continuously fine-tunes itself. China will collapse soon, and once it does, the value of their money will plummet, which is when we will pay them off:)

    February 5, 2011 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
  6. Daniel

    I just want to know if the Quran is being rewritten, and if Osama bin Laden is replacing Muhammed?
    Why can't any of these Muslims see that Osama bin Laden is blaspheming their great leader Muhammed?

    February 5, 2011 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
  7. اhamada elwazerer

    nais

    February 5, 2011 at 11:57 am | Report abuse |
  8. duke

    Had white people reacted to that terrorist Ronald Reagan the way the egyptians are now reacting to mubarak,
    Black people and white people would be a lot more cooperative with each other today!
    Phuck All reagan supporters!!

    February 5, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  9. NuckinFuts

    @Daniel: I just want to know why the CIA was ordered not to pursue bin laden after they had him cornered and supposedly injured prior to the US invasion into Afghanistan in 2001. I'd also like to know why the US military is being used as hired muscle to protect the poppy fields in a country that produces 80% of the world's heroin? If bin laden wanted US troops out of Saudi Arabia he would have been better off blowing up some Saudi royal family members. The pieces don't fit. He's either Robin Hood or he's a tool being used by America. I'd also like to know if these protests in Egypt will stop now that Mubarak has resigned? Always more questions than answers I'm afraid.

    February 5, 2011 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
  10. NuckinFuts

    @duke: For someone who idolizes John "the duke" Wayne you sure hate white American cowboy actors. Really I notice all you ever do on here is bash righties. The truth is Dems have done zip to fix the systemic problems plaguing the black american. They want every black person in this country on public assistance and out of the workforce so you will be the good little voter and obey your democrat every election. The repubs are at least honest about not wanting to help black people.

    February 5, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  11. abdullah

    Mubarak's resignation as head of his political party means nothing to the Egyptian people. If this resignation is a ploy to start negotiiation between Mubarak oppositon leaders and Suleiman, it will not work.

    There can be no negotiation, so far as the anti-Mubarak opposition is concerned, until Mubarak leaves office , and until he leaves Egypt, along with his family members, and members of his regime. That will be a plane full of corruption bound for Europe or Saudi Arabia. Mubarak will not be welcomed in America.

    Please stay on the suject and the headlines. Avoid extraneous absurd comments.

    February 5, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  12. duke

    Nuckin futs!!
    Name me one democratic official that I have ever championed??
    Do I think obama is doing a good job??
    I think he's doing what's best in a lot of areas(but I'm no fan)!
    If I could I would P!sss on johns grave,and reagan"the terror"!
    Oh yeah regardless of what you were told,black people want to work and be paid and treated equal(no special treatment),but the propaganda that you subscribe to won't allow you to know or understand that!!

    February 5, 2011 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Darrin

    Now that the son has left Mubarak can do the right thing and blow his own brains out.

    February 5, 2011 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Darrin

    Time now for America to stand up against the despots we have in our own government.

    February 5, 2011 at 2:11 pm | Report abuse |
  15. kim

    Mubarak has a letting go of power he needs to leave but thlnks he above the wishes and the will of the people a tyrant needs to be removed by force he lied to hisself believing the people love him despite the misery and poor conditions that they are force to live. He has blinded hisself to the truth they want his ass to leave. Men or rulers like mubarak are all about control and tyrannical government . They dont care what the people want its all just about what they think or feel. People will get tired of that when they have no hope or future and cant move forward.

    February 5, 2011 at 2:12 pm | Report abuse |
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