Tahrir Square a day after a revolution
February 12th, 2011
06:40 PM ET

Egypt: U.S. military officials meet with Middle East counterparts

Tens of thousands of demonstrators have rallied since January 25 on the streets of Egypt's major cities, calling for economic reforms, railing against corruption and demanding an end to President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule. After daily street demonstrations, Mubarak decided to step down from the presidency of Egypt on February 11 and assigned the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces to run the affairs of the country. Check out our full coverage and the latest tweets from CNN correspondents on the ground.

Developments, as confirmed by CNN, on the revolution in Egypt:

[Update 1:40 a.m. in Cairo, 6:40 p.m. ET] Egyptians on Saturday cleared burned cars, garbage and debris that accumulated over 18 days at Tahrir Square, a sign that Cairo and the rest of the country were beginning to get back to work while wondering what government comes next after the revolution.

A day after President Hosni Mubarak stepped down, employees and businesses readied themselves for Sunday, the traditional start of the work week. The country's stock market is expected to reopen Wednesday.

Volunteers repainted black and white striped street curbs around a monument by the Egyptian Museum, which had been on the front line in street battles between Mubarak's foes and supporters.

[Update 12:08 a.m. in Cairo, 5:08 p.m. ET] U.S. President Barack Obama spoke by phone Saturday with the leaders of Britain, Jordan and Turkey to discuss developments in Egypt. He also welcomed the Egyptian military's announcement that it is committed to a democratic transition and will honor Egypt's international obligations, the White House said.

[Update 10:15 p.m. in Cairo, 3:15 p.m. ET] Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak spoke to his Egyptian counterpart Mohammed Hussein Tantawi on the phone Saturday, according to a ministry spokesman. No other details were available.

[Update 8:45 p.m. in Cairo, 1:45 p.m. ET] Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, plans to visit key Mideast allies Israel and Jordan this weekend, a Pentagon official told CNN on Saturday.

U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates spoke with Egyptian Field Marshal Mohammed Hussein Tantawi on Saturday, the sixth phone conversation with the minister since the situation began.

[Update 7:42 p.m. in Cairo, 12:42 ET] Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu welcomed the Egyptian military's intention to honor its peace treaty with Israel and said the agreement "is the cornerstone for peace and stability in the entire Middle East."

- Saudi Arabia's government said on Saturday it "welcomes the peaceful transition of power in Egypt," the official Saudi news agency reported.

- Military forces in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Saturday detained three people for allegedly harassing others, though those individuals are expected to be released later, CNN's Frederik Pleitgen reported.

- Egypt's military urged the population to help bolster the country's economic condition, a sector that has been paralyzed in recent weeks by the country's unrest.

- The military urged residents to cooperate with the country's police forces, a reference to the animosity protesters had toward police that helped fuel the Egyptian uprising.

- Before a new Cabinet is formed, the Egyptian military called on people and the government to support the caretaker government.

- Egypt state television, citing a judicial source, reported that the country's former prime minister and former information and interior ministers were banned from traveling abroad due to a lawsuit filed against them.

Update 4:51 p.m. in Cairo, 9:51 a.m. ET] The head of the Egyptian stock market, Khaled Serry Seyam, said trading will resume Wednesday, February 16, Egyptian state TV reported Saturday.

[Update 4:43 p.m. in Cairo, 9:43 a.m. ET] Demonstrators brought into Tahrir Square a large marble statue whose purpose appeared to be to honor those killed in the unrest of the past 18 days.

[Update 3:13 p.m. in Cairo, 8:13 a.m. ET] The Egyptian military called on people and the government to support the caretaker government before a new Cabinet is formed. The military government also said it will honor all international agreements, which would include Egypt's peace treaty with Israel.

[Update 3:06 p.m. in Cairo, 8:06 a.m. ET] A large number of soldiers entered Tahrir Square on foot and began clearing protesters' barricades and taking up positions. Demonstrators cheered the soldiers and patted them on the back as they ran by, and one soldier was hoisted onto protesters' shoulders. Protesters and soldiers worked together to clear debris and load it into dump trucks.

[Update 11:03 a.m. in Cairo, 4:03 a.m. ET] State-run newspapers - which frequently ran the line of Mubarak's government - published headlines such as "The people have brought down the regime" on Saturday.

Many gathered in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Saturday morning said they had stayed overnight amid the celebratory atmosphere. Many said they were happy with the military council taking over. Others said they would stay in the square until they get more concessions - such as the freeing of political prisoners. And some people said they would continue to protest "until Egypt is ruled by a civil government - not a military one."

[Update 10:10 a.m. in Cairo, 3:10 a.m. ET] Clean-up efforts began in the area in and around Cairo's Tahrir Square Saturday morning. Crews towed away burned cars that had been used as barricades and collected garbage.

Some people who spent the night in the square said they would continue to protest "until Egypt is ruled by a civil government, not a military one." Others waved Egyptian flags and painted images of the flag on their faces.

[Update 8:55 a.m. in Cairo, 1:55 a.m. ET] In a statement released late Friday, the Tunisian foreign ministry expressed "total satisfaction" over the announcement of Mubarak's resignation, the Tunis Afrique Presse (TAP) news agency reported.

Wael Ghonim, the Egyptian activist whose Facebook page is credited with triggering the uprising, wrote on his Twitter feed early Saturday, "Dear Egyptians, Go back to your work on Sunday, work like never before and help Egypt become a developed country."

Ghonim, on leave from his job as a Google executive, earlier wrote urging people to try to raise 100 billion Egyptian pounds (17 billion U.S. dollars) "to rebuild Egypt."

Ghonim, who spent 10 days in custody after being seized by Egyptian security, also wrote, "Soon the ugly face of the regime will be supported by documents and evidence."

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Filed under: Egypt • Protest
soundoff (102 Responses)
  1. Floria sigmundi

    This movie is creepy


    February 12, 2011 at 7:31 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Tomaz

    Lack respect or education that these smart posts and news reporters keep talking about egypt and tunisia as middle east? This an African liberation movement. however, we hope every country gets on the train of freedom from Africa to the middle and beyond the seas. Freedom is our right!

    February 12, 2011 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Bleh

    Yo quiero Taco Bell.

    February 12, 2011 at 8:04 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Gudrun

    Egypt has shown the world how to restrain from violence and still getting so much done. Congratulations!!!! We rejoice with you and wish you a wonderful future.
    Now, isn't it time that the World shuts down all the Swiss Banks who so readily help the greedy ones and let others suffer in poverty. It's a new world and this has to stop.

    February 12, 2011 at 8:37 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Cody

    Maybe our officials should demand our money back from Mubarak and his cronies or in the least question and report to us where did the billions/year go and "follow the money". It is time that we are informed of exactly where and how our hard-earned money goes especially when sent out of our country. I cannot imagine a good portion of those billions of US dollars to Egypt did not end up in their pockets. It surely doesn't seem to have reached the Egyptian people who seem to have been locked-in poverty for a long time.

    February 12, 2011 at 8:40 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Cesar

    @veritas, hi.

    February 12, 2011 at 9:23 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Tira

    Congratulations to all the Egyptian people. May you come to know what democracy is, and feels like in your country and in your lives, and I pray that all will continue to move forward with you! Kia Kaha, Kia Toa, Kia Manawanui!!!!

    February 12, 2011 at 9:28 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Barbara Haecker

    Brave men and women stood up for what they believed. I was in awe. May God bless you and keep you in his loving arms. Egypt is free!

    February 12, 2011 at 10:33 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Love Jordan

    The next domino is Jordan Dictator " Abdollah"

    February 12, 2011 at 11:40 pm | Report abuse |
  10. pin

    Poorly behaved sand monkeys, all of them.

    February 12, 2011 at 11:49 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Nazir Habib

    Khush Amdeed ! Viva ! Bravo ! Ole ! Egyptians you have brought about a peaceful change in your country sans violence and desrtruction of public and private property. This is an attestation to the fact that you have done it the humane and civic way. The small band of Mubarak's supporters who tried to disrupt your protest were roundly dealt with. Egyptians, we love you and celebrate the praises of Allmighty Allah with love and affection to all human beings Happy birthday brothers. Salams for 2011 and beyond.

    February 13, 2011 at 12:10 am | Report abuse |
  12. Bleh

    Poorly behaved pin.

    February 13, 2011 at 12:10 am | Report abuse |
  13. deej

    These countries comprise the Middle East:
    Saudi Arabia
    United Arab Emirates

    Jeez, people. Just because Egypt is on the continent of Africa, doesn't mean it's not also a part of the Middle East. The Middle East isn't a Continent! Just like Central America isn't a Continent!Get it, mmmmm? Educate yourself before throwing stones!

    February 13, 2011 at 12:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Mmmmm

      There's a lot of those who think redefining reality makes it a fact. Deej, not to worry it is a treatable insanity.

      February 13, 2011 at 3:48 am | Report abuse |
  14. Dead Fukkers Inc.

    Dear Customers: Our main office “FUK THE DEAD” will be closed next week, we are moving our offices to the cementery so we can give a better service to your dead relatives, our new e-mail is “motherfukker.com”, we will send you our new weekly bulletin “Time To Die”, were you’ll find all the names of the dead that were fuked, and who fuked them, this new service is bought to you by our affilliate “DEAD SOUL FUKERS”, thank you, and fuk you. Regards. Mr. Dead Dik. CEO

    February 13, 2011 at 1:29 am | Report abuse |
  15. Barb

    My praise is for the LORD JESUS
    who came to set the captive free! Everyone should have freedom. May God bless the whole world. Also;

    February 13, 2011 at 4:53 am | Report abuse |
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