Belfast Telegraph

Monday 22 December 2014

Egypt's protests refuse to die - how much longer can Mubarak cling on?

A man with a bandaged face uses a cellular phone during a demonstration in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday Jan. 30, 2011. Minutes before the start of a 4 p.m. curfew, at least two jets appeared and made multiple passes over downtown, including a central square where thousands of protesters were calling for the departure of President Hosni Mubarak. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
In this photo taken Friday, Jan.28, 2011, a crowd demonstrate in Alexandria, Egypt. Thousands of Alexandrians met to pray Sunday Jan 30 in downtown Alexandria, a Mediterranean port city that is a stronghold of the Muslim Brotherhood. After prayers, the crowd marched towards the city's old mosque to pray for the souls of those who died in the protests. (AP Photo/Tarek Fawzi)
In this photo taken Saturday, Jan.29, 2011, a crowd demonstrate in Alexandria, Egypt. Thousands of Alexandrians met to pray Sunday Jan 30 in downtown Alexandria, a Mediterranean port city that is a stronghold of the Muslim Brotherhood. After prayers, the crowd marched towards the city's old mosque to pray for the souls of those who died in the protests.(AP Photo/Tarek Fawzi)
An anti-government protester cries out after seeing the body of another who was shot by police moments before, in Tahrir square in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011. Thousands of anti-government protesters returned to Cairo's central Tahrir Square, chanting slogans against Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak and demanding his departure. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Egyptian men sit as they try to protect from looting the Arcadia shopping center, that was already partially looted, damaged and set on fire by people in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. Cairo residents boarded up homes and set up neighborhood watches of citizens armed with guns, clubs and knives as looting and violence engulfed the capital. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Egyptian army soldiers read newspapers as they sit atop their armored vehicles in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. With the police having disappeared from the streets, residents reported gangs of youths, some on motorbikes, roaming the streets, looting supermarkets, shopping malls and stores. Some of the gangs made it to affluent residential areas in the suburbs, breaking into luxury homes and apartments. The crackle of gunfire could be heard in the city center as well as outlying districts. (AP Photo/Amr Nabil)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 29: Protestors flee a volley tear gas in Tarhir Square on January 29, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Tens of thousands of demonstrators have taken to the streets across Egypt in Cairo, Suez, and Alexandria to call for the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak. Riot police and the Army have been sent into the streets to quell the protests, which so far have claimed 32 lives and left more than a thousand injured. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man walks through flood water near government buildings on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man watches as an Egyptian Army tank approaches on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man sweeps up debris from the site of violence the previous day between marchers and government forces on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A protester walks though Tahrir Square carrying food on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An exhausted marcher rests in Tahrir Square after days of protests on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Exhausted Egyptians rest on the grass in in Tahrir Square after days of protests on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man walks through the charred remains of a burned government building January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian Army officer sympathizing with marchers is carried during an anti-government protest in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Egyptian Army soldiers drive an armored personel carrier slowly through throngs of anti-government protesters in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian Army soldier stands by during a demonstration against President Hosni Mubarak in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man watches as an Egyptian Army tank approaches on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 29: People protest against the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak outside of the United Nations on January 29, 2011 in New York City. Egypt, a Muslim nation that has a long and deep-seated relationship with America is the latest Muslim country after Tunisia to be shaken by waves of violent protests demanding that the current regime step down. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An anti-government protester cries during Islamic prayers in Tahrir Square at sundown January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Anti-government protesters conduct Islamic prayers in Tahrir Square at sundown January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man holds an Egyptian flag as the sun sets on a mass anti-government protest in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An anti-government protester cries during Islamic prayers in Tahrir Square at sundown January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man in Tahrir Square holds a piece of paper with a drawing of President Hosni Mubarak on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man in Tahrir Square holds a placard on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People pray in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man in Tahrir Square holds an anti US placard on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man wrapped in an Egyptian flag gestures in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A boy in Tahrir Square holds doctored photographs of President Hosni Mubarak on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People in Tahrir Square pray for the dead on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man in Tahrir Square holds a placard calling for President Hosni Mubarak to ''go out'' on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man gestures as he speaks to protestors in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. Broadcasts from the Al-Jazeera television network via an Egyptian satellite have now been halted. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei waves to supporters in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian Army soldier holds a flower given to him by anti-government protesters in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man smiles as the sun sets on a mass anti-government protest in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Protesters beckon to Egyptian Army soldiers during a demonstration against President Hosni Mubarek in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian man enters through the windows of a looted McDonalds restaurant just off of Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man stands in the charred hallway of a burned government building January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian man holds a chain as part of a ad-hoc neighborhood security militia in residential neighborhood in central Cairo the afternoon of January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Egyptians look at a fighter jet flying loudly over central Cairo in a residential neighborhood the afternoon of January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian man looks at fighter jets flying loudly over central Cairo in a residential neighborhood the afternoon of January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Egyptians shout, wave flags, and gesture at an Egyptian Army helicopter buzzing over Tahrir Square the afternoon of January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Anti-government protesters chant and sing in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Anti-government protesters stand together and watch a mass gathering in Tahrir Square, defying a 4 pm curfew January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Egyptians gather in the muddy grassy area of central Tahrir Square during a mass protest against the Egyptian government during the late afternoon January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People in Tahrir Square gesture at a low flying police helicopter as the curfew begins on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People in Tahrir Square celebrate after hearing an incorrect rumour that President Hosni Mubarak had left the country on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A woman shouts as she blocks the entry of army tanks to Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A woman shouts as she blocks the entry of army tanks to Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian Army soldier is a handed a flower by an anti-government protesters in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyptian Army soldier (center) prays along with anti-government protesters during the afternoon in Tahrir Square January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei speaks to supporters in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei waves to supporters in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei arrives to speak to supporters in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Protestors block the entry of army tanks to Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Protestors sit down to block the entry of army tanks to Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A protestor writes a message on a placard in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Protestors stand under a placard in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
Tanks move through the streets near Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as protesters gather to call for the resignation of President Mubarak. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
The pyramids are seen as a military helicopter flies over Cairo, Egypt, as protesters gather to call for the resignation of President Mubarak. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A military helicopter flies low over Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
An army officer is held on the shoulders of protesters in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A fighter plane flies low over Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A boy is treated at a makeshift hospital in a mosque off Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A military helicopter flies low over Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: A man walks through the charred remains of a burned government building January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People defy a government curfew as they continue to occupy Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: Opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei arrives to speak to supporters in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People pray in front of army tanks in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: An Egyption military fighter jet and helicopter pass low over Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes after Police were nowhere to be seen on the streets. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 30: People pray in front of army tanks in Tahrir Square on January 30, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Cairo remained in a state of flux and marchers continued to protest in the streets and defy curfew, demanding the resignation of Egyptian president Hosni Mubarek. As President Mubarak struggles to regain control after five days of protests he has appointed Omar Suleiman as vice-president. The present death toll stands at 100 and up to 2,000 people are thought to have been injured during the clashes which started last Tuesday. Overnight it was reported that thousands of inmates from the Wadi Naturn prison had escaped and that Egyptians were forming vigilante groups in order to protect their homes. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
An Egyptian man uses his mobile phone to take a picture of the Arcadia shopping center, that was looted, damaged and set on fire by people in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday Jan. 30, 2011. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Amal Elbahi, originally from Cairo, speaks during a demonstration near the Egyptian Embassy in Washington Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011, as demonstrators, holding signs and chanting, demanded that Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak step down. The demonstrators also criticized the Obama administration's response to the clashes in Egypt, where thousands of protesters have thrown the country's 30-year-old regime into tumult. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)
A military helicopter flies low over Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A man walks through a street off Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
A boy is treated at a makeshift hospital in a mosque off Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, as mass protests against the three-decade rule of President Hosni Mubarak continue across the country. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Picture date: Sunday January 30, 2011. Egypt risks falling into the hands of extremists if President Hosni Mubarak does not push ahead with a democratic 'transformation', Foreign Secretary William Hague warned today. See PA story POLITICS Egypt. Photo credit should read: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire
In this Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011 photo provided by Mona Seif, an Egyptian tank enters Tahrir Square in Cairo with anti-Mubarak slogans painted in Arabic. (AP Photo/Mona Seif) NO SALES
An Egyptian soldier walks past anti-government protesters as they pray in Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. (AP Photo/Tara Todras-Whitehill)
Protesters wave at a military helicopter flying over a demonstration in Cairo, Egypt, Sunday Jan. 30, 2011. Minutes before the start of a 4 p.m. curfew, at least two jets appeared and made multiple passes over downtown, including a central square where thousands of protesters were calling for the departure of President Hosni Mubarak. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
In this photo released by China's Xinhua news agency, demonstrators gather near the main Tahrir Square in Cairo, Egypt, on Saturday Jan. 29, 2011. Thousands of anti-government protesters have returned to Cairo's central square, chanting slogans against Hosni Mubarak just hours after the Egyptian president fired his Cabinet but refused to step down. (AP Photo/Xinhua, Cai Yang) NO SALES
A man walks past military vehicles blocking a street in Cairo, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. (AP Photo/Ahmed Ali)
A soldiers stands guard in front of the Egyptian museum in Cairo, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. (AP Photo/Ahmed Ali)
Egyptian Nobel Peace laureate and democracy advocate Mohamed ElBaradei addresses the crowd at Tahrir Square in Cairo, Sunday Jan.30, 2011. (AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)
Egyptian armored vehicles take position outside the Egyptian museum in Cairo Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. At left is the burned ruling party headquarters. (AP Photo/Tara Todra Whitehill)
Women react during a demonstration in Cairo, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. (AP Photo/Ahmed Ali)
In this photo taken Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011, a police officer gestures as he joins anti-government protestors in Suez, Egypt. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. (AP Photo)
In this photo taken Saturday, Jan. 29, 2011, police officers are seen in a street of Suez, Egypt. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. (AP Photo)
A man walks past military vehicles blocking a street in Cairo, Sunday, Jan. 30, 2011. The Arab world's most populous nation appeared to be swiftly moving closer to a point at which it either dissolves into widespread chaos or the military expands its presence and control of the streets. (AP Photo/Ahmed Ali)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 29: People protest against the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak outside of the United Nations on January 29, 2011 in New York City. Egypt, a Muslim nation that has a long and deep-seated relationship with America is the latest Muslim country after Tunisia to be shaken by waves of violent protests demanding that the current regime step down. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 29: People protest against the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak outside of the United Nations on January 29, 2011 in New York City. Egypt, a Muslim nation that has a long and deep-seated relationship with America is the latest Muslim country after Tunisia to be shaken by waves of violent protests demanding that the current regime step down. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 29: A man yells during a protest against the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak outside of the United Nations on January 29, 2011 in New York City. Egypt, a Muslim nation that has a long and deep-seated relationship with America is the latest Muslim country after Tunisia to be shaken by waves of violent protests demanding that the current regime step down. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 29: People protest against the regime of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak outside of the United Nations on January 29, 2011 in New York City. Egypt, a Muslim nation that has a long and deep-seated relationship with America is the latest Muslim country after Tunisia to be shaken by waves of violent protests demanding that the current regime step down. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 29: Medics in a mosque attend to a man injured during clashes with riot police near Tahrir Square on January 29, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Tens of thousands of demonstrators have taken to the streets across Egypt in Cairo, Suez, and Alexandria to call for the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak. Riot police and the Army have been sent into the streets to quell the protests, which so far according to health officials have claimed at least 45 lives and left more than a two-thousand injured. The cabinet has formally resigned, but protesters are seeking a regime change with the resignation of Mubarak. Whilst the Army has deployed tanks and Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) to the streets there has been little implementation of them, and soldiers have interacted peacefully with passing marchers. The government has installed a curfew, blockaded access to the Giza pyramids with tanks and APC's and taken measures to secure museums from looters. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 29: A child sits on a tank while a Egyptian soldiers stands by during a demonstration against President Hosni Mubarek in Tahrir Square on January 29, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Tens of thousands of demonstrators have taken to the streets across Egypt in Cairo, Suez, and Alexandria to call for the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak. Riot police and the Army have been sent into the streets to quell the protests, which so far have claimed at least 38 lives and left more than a two-thousand injured. The cabinet has formally resigned, but protesters are seeking a regime change with the resignation of Mubarak. The government has installed a curfew, blockaded access to the Giza pyramids with tanks and APC's and taken measures to secure museums from looters. (Photo by Chris Hondros/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX ***
In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, a police vehicle is set on fire by anti-government demonstrators in Cairo, capital of Egypt, on Friday, Jan. 28, 2011. Protesters have seized the streets of Cairo, battling police with stones and firebombs, burning down the ruling party headquarters, and defying a night curfew enforced by a military deployment.
Egyptian anti-government activists clash with riot police in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, Jan. 28, 2011. Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters poured into the streets of Egypt Friday, stoning and confronting police who fired back with rubber bullets and tear gas in the most violent and chaotic scenes yet in the challenge to President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule. One protester was killed and even a Nobel Peace laureate was placed under house arrest after joining demonstrations.
A police vehicle is engulfed in flames after it was set on fire during clashes with anti-government protesters in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, Jan. 28, 2011. Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters poured into the streets of Egypt Friday, stoning and confronting police who fired back with rubber bullets and tear gas in the most violent and chaotic scenes yet in the challenge to President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule.
A young girl holds a sign as she joins protesters outside the Egyptian Embassy in Dublin, in a show of solidarity with thousands of anti-government activists in Cairo and other cities.
In this photo released by China's Xinhua News Agency, anti-government demonstrators protest in Cairo, capital of Egypt, on Friday, Jan. 28, 2011. Protesters have seized the streets of Cairo, battling police with stones and firebombs, burning down the ruling party headquarters, and defying a night curfew enforced by a military deployment.
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 28: Army tanks line up in Tahrir Square on January 28, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt.Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital. Hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 29: Army tanks line up in Tahrir Square on January 29, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt.Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital. Hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
A protestor is seen in the streets during protests in Suez, Egypt, Friday, Jan. 28, 2011. Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters poured into the streets of Egypt Friday, stoning and confronting police who fired back with rubber bullets and tear gas in the most violent and chaotic scenes yet in the challenge to President Hosni Mubarak's 30-year rule.
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 28: Sameh Abouass (R) and others participate in a rally in front of the White House on January 28, 2011 in Washington, DC. A coalition of Egyptian organizations want Egyptian President Hosny Mubarak to be oustered and are urging the U.S. Government to support the Egyptian protests. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 28: Police stand near a burning minibus near Tahrir Square on January 28, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt.Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital. Hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 28: Riot police face protestors on the Kasr Al Nile Bridge on January 28, 2011 in downtown Cairo, Egypt. Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital and hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell anti-government demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) ***BESTPIX***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 28: Riot police fire water cannons at protestors attempting to cross the Kasr Al Nile Bridge on January 28, 2011 in downtown Cairo, Egypt. Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital and hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell anti-government demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) ***BESTPIX***
An Egyptian Army armored personnel carrier is surrounded by anti-government protesters near Tahrir square in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Friday, Jan. 28, 2011.
An Egyptian soldier tries to calm down anti-government protesters, one which had climbed atop his armoured personnel carrier, near Tahrir Square, in Cairo, Egypt, Friday, Jan. 28, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a fourth day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years.
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 27: Egyptian opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei is surrounded by reporters as he arrives at Cairo airport on January 27, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. ElBaradei has vowed to join anti government protesters in Cairo tomorrow. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images) ***BESTPIX***
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 27: Egyptian opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei is surrounded by reporters as he arrives at Cairo airport on January 27, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Mr ElBaradei has vowed to join anti government protesters in Cairo tomorrow. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
Egyptian protesters clash with riot police in Suez, Egypt Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
Egyptians protestors flee during clashes with anti-riot policemen in Suez, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
Egyptians protestors flee during clashes with anti-riot policemen in Suez, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
An Egyptian riot policeman fires at protesters in Suez, Egypt Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 27: Local newspapers carry reports and pictures of street protests on January 27, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital and hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell anti-government demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
CAIRO, EGYPT - JANUARY 27: Locals look at newspapers carrying reports and pictures of street protests on January 27, 2011 in Cairo, Egypt. Thousands of police are on the streets of the capital and hundreds of arrests have been made in an attempt to quell anti-government demonstrations. (Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)
Egyptian anti-government activists chant slogans as they gather on the rooftop of the Lawyers Syndicate in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)
Egyptian protestors flash V sign as anti-riot policemen surround a protest in Suez, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
Anti-government activists wheel a rubbish bin to form a barricade as they clash with Egyptian riot police in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
A wounded riot policeman is led away by colleagues as Egyptian riot police clash with anti-government activists in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
A wounded riot policeman is led away by colleagues as Egyptian riot police clash with anti-government activists in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Egyptian riot police clash with anti-government activists in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Egyptian anti-government activists throw stones on riot police during clashes in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
An Egyptian activist shouts anti-government slogans during a protest in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. A small gathering of Egyptian anti-government activists tried to stage a second day of protests in Cairo Wednesday in defiance of a ban on any gatherings, but police quickly moved in and used force to disperse the group. (AP Photo/Hossam Khalil)
Egyptian anti-riot police confront Egyptian activist outside a journalists syndicate in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. A small gathering of Egyptian anti-government activists tried to stage a second day of protests in Cairo Wednesday in defiance of a ban on any gatherings, but police quickly moved in and used force to disperse the group. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Egyptian riot police clash with anti-government activists in Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
A riot van drives through a burning barricade as Egyptian riot police clash with anti-government activists in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian anti-government activists clashed with police for a second day Wednesday in defiance of an official ban on any protests but beefed up police forces on the streets quickly moved in and used tear gas and beatings to disperse demonstrations. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Angery Egyptian activist shouts at anti-riot policemen who block the way leading to journalists syndicate in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. A small gathering of Egyptian anti-government activists tried to stage a second day of protests in Cairo Wednesday in defiance of a ban on any gatherings, but police quickly moved in and used force to disperse the group. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Egyptian plain cloth policemen arrest Mohamed Abdul Quddus, Rapporteur of the civil Liberties Committee and member of the Press Syndicate Council, outside the journalists syndicate in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. A small gathering of Egyptian anti-government activists tried to stage a second day of protests in Cairo Wednesday in defiance of a ban on any gatherings, but police quickly moved in and used force to disperse the group. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
Egyptian anti-riot police block the way leading to a journalists syndicate in downtown Cairo, Egypt, Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. A small gathering of Egyptian anti-government activists tried to stage a second day of protests in Cairo Wednesday in defiance of a ban on any gatherings, but police quickly moved in and used force to disperse the group. (AP Photo/Mohammed Abu Zaid)
A wounded protester is carried away by others during clashes in Cairo, Egypt, in the early hours of Wednesday, Jan. 26, 2011. Egyptian police fired tear gas and rubber bullets and beat protesters to clear thousands of people from a central Cairo square Wednesday after the biggest demonstrations in years against President Hosni Mubarak's authoritarian rule. (AP Photo/Ben Curtis)
A fire station seen burning during clashes between protestors and anti-riot policemen in Suez, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
Egyptians protestors flee during clashes with anti-riot policemen in Suez, Egypt, Thursday, Jan. 27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)
Egyptians protestors clash with anti-riot policemen in Suez, Egypt, Thursday, Jan.27, 2011. Egyptian activists protested for a third day as social networking sites called for a mass rally in the capital Cairo after Friday prayers, keeping up the momentum of the country's largest anti-government protests in years. (AP Photo)

The old lady in the red scarf was standing inches from the front of am American-made M1 Abrams tank of the Egyptian Third Army, right on the edge of Tahrir Square. Its soldiers were paratroops, some in red berets, others in helmets, gun barrels pointed across the square, heavy machine guns mounted on the turrets.

"If they fire on the Egyptian people, Mubarak is finished," she said. "And if they don't fire on the Egyptian people, Mubarak is finished." Of such wisdom are Egyptians now possessed.



Shortly before dusk, four F-16 Falcons – again, of course, manufactured by President Barack Obama's country – came screaming over the square, echoes bouncing off the shabby grey buildings and the giant Nasserist block, as the eyes of the tens of thousands of people in the square stared upwards. "They are on our side," the cry went up from the crowds. Somehow, I didn't think so. And those tanks, new to the square, 14 in all that arrived with no slogans pained on them, their soldiers sullen and apprehensive, had not come – as the protesters fondly believed – to protect them.



But then, when I talked to an officer on one of the tanks, he burst out with a smile. "We will never fire on our people – even if we are ordered to do so," he shouted over the roar of his engine. Again, I was not so sure. President Hosni Mubarak – or perhaps we should now say "president" in quotation marks – was at the military headquarters, having appointed his new junta of former military and intelligence officers. The rumour went round the square: the old wolf would try to fight on to the end. Others said it didn't matter. "Can he kill 80 million Egyptians?"



Anti-American sentiment was growing after Mr Obama's continued if tepid support for the Mubarak regime. "No, Obama, not Mubarak," posters read. And Mr Mubarak's face appeared with a Star of David superimposed over his face. Many of the crowd produced stun gun cartridge cases fired last week with "Made in the USA" stamped on the bottom. And I noticed the lead tank's hull bore markings beginning "MFR" – at this point a soldier with a rifle and bayonet fixed was ordered to arrest me so I ran into the crowd and he retreated – but could "MFR" stand for the US Mobile Force Reserve, which keeps its tanks in Egypt? Was this tank column on loan from the Americans? You don't need to work out what the Egyptians make of all this.



Yet there were extraordinary scenes earlier in the day between protesters and tank crews of another unit (this time, the machines were older American M-60 Pattons of Vietnam vintage), which appeared to be about to protect a unit of water cannons sent to clear the streets. Hundreds of young men overwhelmed one tank, and when a lieutenant in sun glasses began firing into the air, he was pushed back against his armoured vehicle and had to climb on top to avoid the men. Yet the crowd quickly became good natured, posed for pictures on the tank and handed the soldiers fruit and water.



When a long line of troops assembled across the road, a very old, hunch-backed man sought and gained permission to approach them. I followed him as he embraced the lieutenant and kissed him on both cheeks and said: "You are our sons. We are your people." And then he walked down the row of troops and kissed each one and embraced each one and told each one that he was his son. You need a heart of stone not to be moved by such scenes and yesterday was replete with them.



At one point, a group of protesters brought a man they said was a thief – of which Cairo seems full at the moment – and he was trussed up and handed to the soldiers. "You are here to protect us," they chanted. When one of the soldiers hit the man in the face, his officer slapped him. Then the soldier sat down, shaking his head in despair. All day, an Egyptian Mi-25 helicopter – this time a relic of Soviet ordnance – circled the crowds, six rockets in the pods, but did nothing. Later a French-built Gazelle of the Egyptian air force flew low over the crowds, and the people waved at the place and the pilot could be seen waving back.



And all the time Egyptians walked up to foreigners – and a grey haired Englishman doesn't look very Egyptian – and insisted that a people who had lost their fear could never be reinjected with fear. "We will never be afraid again," a young woman shouted at me as the jets screamed over again. And a former cop now claiming to be a liaison man between the demonstrators and the army said that "the army will be with us because they know Mubarak must go". Again, I am not so sure.



And the looting and burning go on. The former policeman – who should know – told me that many of the looters are members of a group which belonged to the Mr Mubarak's National Democratic Party, whose previous role had been to bully Egyptians to go to polling stations and vote for their beloved leader. So why, we all wonder now, are these men trying to loot and burn, crimes which are being blamed on all those who demand that Mr Mubarak leave the country? Those demands, incidentally, now include the expulsion of Omar Suleiman, his former top spy, who is Vice-President.



Across Egypt, and on almost every street in Cairo, there are now vigilantes – not Mubarak men, but ordinary civilians who are tired of the semi-official gangs who are robbing their own people at night-time. To get back to my hotel last night, I had to pass through eight checkpoints of men, young and old – one was stooped, with a walking stick in one hand and an old British .303 Lee Enfield rifle in the other – who are now attacking thieves and handing them to the army. But this is no Dad's Army.


An Egyptian Army soldier holds a flower given to him by protesters

In the early hours of yesterday morning, a group of armed men turned up at the Children's Cancer Hospital near the old Roman aqueduct. They wanted to take the medical equipment, but within minutes, local people ran down the road and threatened the men with knives. They retreated at once. Dr Khaled el-Noury, the chief operating officer at the hospital, told me that the armed visitors were disorganised and apparently frightened of being harmed.



They were right. The reception clerk at the children's hospital showed me the kitchen knife he kept on his desk for protection. Further proof of fighting power lay outside the gate where men appeared holding clubs and sticks and pokers. A boy – perhaps eight years old – appeared brandishing an 18-inch butcher's knife, slightly more than half his height. Other men holding knives of equal length came to shake hands with the foreign journalist.



They are no third force. And they believe in the army. Will the soldiers go into the square? And does it matter if Mr Mubarak goes anyway?

Independent

COMMENT RULES: Comments that are judged to be defamatory, abusive or in bad taste are not acceptable and contributors who consistently fall below certain criteria will be permanently blacklisted. The moderator will not enter into debate with individual contributors and the moderator’s decision is final. It is Belfast Telegraph policy to close comments on court cases, tribunals and active legal investigations. We may also close comments on articles which are being targeted for abuse. Problems with commenting? customercare@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

Latest News

Latest Sport

Latest Showbiz