Babylon & Beyond

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EGYPT: Protesters react to Mubarak stepping down

February 11, 2011 |  8:34 am


Protesters reacted immediately after Egyptian Vice President Omar Suleiman announced on state television Friday that President Hosni Mubarak was stepping down.

"In these difficult circumstances that the country is passing through, President Hosni Mubarak has decided to leave the position of the presidency," Suleiman said, according to the Associated Press. "He has commissioned the armed forces council to direct the issues of the state."

Some protesters dropped to their knees in prayer, according to CNN. Others waved flags, honked car horns, fired shots in the air and swarmed tanks in Tahrir Square and outside the presidential palace.

"This is the greatest day of my life," opposition leader Mohamed ElBaradei told the Associated Press. "The country has been liberated after decades of repression." He added that he expects a "beautiful" transition of power.

-- Molly Hennessy-Fiske

Photo: Tens of thousands of anti-government protesters gather in Cairo's Tahrir Square on Friday. Credit: Amr Diab / Associated Press