30 years of Mubarak rule crumbles amid 18 days of freedom protests

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February 11, 2011 22:36

Egyptians celebrate inside Tahrir Square soon after the announcement of Mubarak's resignation. Photo - Dylan Martinez/Reuters

Who: Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

What: The deeply unpopular Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has resigned from his post after days of huge protests against his regime. Omar Suleiman, the Mubarak-appointed vice-president, announced the president was “waiving” his office and handing over authority to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces in a televised address to the nation. Millions of protestors gathered in streets and squares across Egypt received the news with a roar of approval, chanting celebratory slogans, waving the national and singing the Egyptian anthem.

Where: The announcement of Mubarak’s departure from power as well as the celebration by the masses came in the Egyptian capital, Cairo.

When: The Egyptian Vice President appeared on the television at 1800 local time on Friday, 11 February to make the historic announcement.

Why: Egyptians resented the 30 year-old iron fist rule of Hosni Mubarak and a life of oppression under his army-backed regime. “Now we have our freedom and can breathe and demand our rights. In Mubarak’s era, we never saw a good day. Hopefully now we will see better times,” said Mostafa Kamal, 33, a salesman chanted. The fall on Tunisian dictator of 27 years Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali on 14 January inspired protests around the region. Egyptians had been demonstrating against inflation, rising food prices, poverty, unemployment and the authoritarian regime in huge numbers since 25 January.

How: Mubarak is the second Arab leader to be overthrown by a popular uprising in a month. Resisting the demands of millions of Egyptians to step down, he handed over the power after 18 days of unrest and mass protests across the African nation. Reports say he fled to his palaces in the Red Sea resort town of Sharm El-Sheikh, some 600km southeast of Cairo. Vice President Omar Suleiman, Mubarak’s close aide, announced a military council would run the affairs of the country. A free and fair presidential election has been promised for September.

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