Furious crowds greeted Egypt President Hosni Mubarak's announcement that he would transfer some powers to his vice president—but cling to his office until September elections. Plus, full coverage of Egypt's protests.
Defying expectations that he would step side after 17 straight days of protests against his regime, Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak said only that he would delegate some powers to his Vice President Omar Suleiman, the country’s longtime intelligence chief, in a national address on Thursday—a move condoned by the nation’s constitution. Mubarak, however, will not be relinquishing his post as president, merely reaffirming his commitment not to run in the upcoming September elections. Mubarak also said he would propose new constitutional reforms and phase out emergency laws in the future.
Photos: Egypt Protests
Huge crowds in Cairo’s Tahrir Square reacted with outrage. “Get out! Get out!” they shouted, vowing to march to the presidential palace in protest. Others said they would remain in Tahrir Square, where tent cities and plywood shelters have sprung up, until Mubarak gave his full resignation.
Shortly after Mubarak’s speech, the newly empowered Suleiman gave remarks and—words destined to only further rile protesters—urged citizens to quiet down. “Go back home,” he said. "Go back to your work. The country needs your hand. Do not listen to the satellite television station whose main purpose is to fuel sedition."