Egypt's Mubarak hands over power to VP without stepping down

08:23, February 11, 2011      

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The photo grab from NBC news shows Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak delivering a televised speech in Cairo, capital of Egypt, Feb. 10, 2011. Mubarak said in a televised speech on Thursday night that he will hand over power to Vice President Omar Suleiman, but will not resign, in a response to more than two weeks of mass protests against his 30-year rule, the country's state TV reported. (Xinhua Photo)


Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said in a televised speech on Thursday night that he will hand over power to Vice President Omar Suleiman, but will not resign, in response to more than two weeks of mass protests against his 30-year rule.

"According to the constitution, I will shoulder my responsibilities until the country witnesses the stable and peaceful transfer of power in September," Mubarak said.

"I'll transfer power to the vice president according to the constitution," he said, adding that "mistakes are possible in any regime, however, it is vital to admit and hold those who make mistakes accountable."

Mubarak's speech came in response to the massive demonstrations that swept Egypt for more than two weeks calling for his resignation. After the president announced his decision, protesters in central Cairo's Tahrir Square chanted "he must leave, " obviously unsatisfied with Mubarak's concession.

Some frustrated protesters claimed that they will storm the presidential palace on Friday.

Earlier on Thursday, Mubarak held meetings with Suleiman and Prime Minister Ahmed Shafiq in the presidential palace, local media reported, without providing further details.

Meanwhile, Egyptian Information Minister Ahmad Nabih el-Fekki denied Thursday that the president will step down, saying "he will not hand over his power," in a written scroll on state TV, in response to wide speculation that the 82-year-old president might step down to ease the crisis nationwide.


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