AU following situation in Egypt: AUC head

08:38, January 30, 2011      

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The Chairperson of the African Union Commission Mr. Jean Ping, attends a press conference at the African Union Commission Center in Addis Ababa, Jan. 29, 2011. (Xinhua/Zhao Yingquan)

The African Union (AU) is closely following the situation in Egypt, AU Commission Chairperson Jean Ping said during a press conference ahead of the AU summit scheduled for Jan. 30-31.

The AU “have been preoccupied to follow closely the situation in this country (Egypt),” said Jean Ping.

But he said the AU is not currently in the position to take actions. “We cannot go in every country to do the job of the country,” he said.

“But if you have a crisis, then we (AU) are concerned and we have to give our opinion and take actions,” the AUC head said.

Tens of thousands of outraged people, inspired by the Tunisian "Jasmine Revolution", took to streets in Egypt in the past four days, asking Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and the government to step down.

The demonstration, started peacefully on Tuesday afternoon, turned into violence in the following days.

Egypt's cabinet officially resigned during a meeting on Saturday following President Mubarak's demand early in the day. But Mubarak, who has been in office for 30 years, refused to step down.

The summit, to be held under the theme “Towards Greater Unity and Integration Through Shared Values”, will gather heads of state and government from AU member states to discuss issues including Africa’s integration as well as peace and security.

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