Skip navigation
Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California
Top Stories

Egyptian Protesters Reject Presidential Proposal

Protesters in Cairo are calling for military leader Hussein Tantawi to hand over control to civilian authority.

Military leader Hussein Tantawi promised Tuesday that presidential elections will take place in Egypt by the end of June 2012, but the offer has been rejected by the tens of thousands protesting in Cairo's Tahrir Square. 

Parliamentary elections are scheduled for Monday, but the protesters responded to Tantawi by chanting "ehral, ehral" meaning, "leave."

This will be the first vote since authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak lost power in an uprising 9 months ago. But the protesters want power to be transferred to civilian authority.

"We want the military council to step down and hand authority to a national salvation government with full authority," said Khaled El-Sayed, a protester from the Youth Revolution Coalition and one of the candidates in the parliamentary election.  El-Sayed is also calling for the commander of the military police and the Interior Minister, who is in charge of the police, to be tried for "horrific crimes."

In the past four days, 29 people have died as a result of clashes and demonstrations occuring mainly in Cairo.

The now deadly clashes may be curtailing the transition to democracy that protesters are fighting for.

Tantawi sees the presidential election as a way to speed up the process, and also relinquish the political power of the armed forces.

"The armed forces, represented by the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces, has no desire to rule and puts the country's interests above all.  It is ready to hand over responsibility immediately and return to its original duty of defending the country if the people want that and through a public referendum if it is necessary," said Tantawi in a televised address to the nation.

Tantawi did not acknowledge the four days of protest in Tahrir Square.

"The military council has failed to manage the transitional period, and the generals' hands are tainted by the blood of the nation's youth and have been collaborating with the counterrevolution," said a youth group protesting in the square.

"What does he exactly mean by a referendum? We have already held a referendum by being here in the square. Egypt is right here," said 50-year-old lawyer Hossam Mohsen, a protester in the square.

According to two politicians who attended a five-hour crisis meeting with the Tantawi earlier on Tuesday, Tantawi wants to hand over power to a civilian government by July 1.

But Tantawi did not mention this in his televised address.

According to the Interior Ministry, protesters have attempted to storm the ministry near Tahrir square, climbing over buildings and lobbing firebombs into the compound.  The Ministry has also said that protesters set fire to cars outside the ministry and opened fire on policemen. The ministry has denied allegations that police countered with live ammunition on protesters


[...] Egyptian Protesters Reject Presidential Proposal [...]

The army is the old regime, radical change of apparatus and system is needed. Support the oppressed in EGYPT, Syria, N. Africa, Middle East & Globally. Watch MEN OF CONVENTION on youtube BEFORE IT'S BANNED in EGYPT, Syria, Yemen, Jordan & France! This is a director's cut of 'Men of Convention' dedicated to the global uprisings against oppression 2011 - 2012 and beyond. It has been launched on Youtube for the first time on the significant date of 11/11/11. Please tell your friends.

Leave a comment

United Teachers Los Angeles Protests Deasy

By Leslie Noye and Matt Levin
09/30/14 | 10:50 a.m. PDT

Parents and teachers wore red as a sign of unity against Deasy's $1 billion budget for iPads. (Photos by Matt...

Wesleyan University Fraternities Ordered to Become Co-ed

By sreiffen
09/23/14 | 10:46 a.m. PDT

Multiple cases of sexual assault have forced the university to take severe action. 

ATM Fees Reach New High

A Look at the World's Largest Airborne Law Enforcement Agency

No. 18 Trojans Trample Beavers

No. 19 Women's Volleyball Looks to Rebound Against UW

We detected that you might be on a mobile device such as an iPad or iPhone. Sorry, at this time the video box is only visible on desktop computers.

"It's Going Down, I'm Yelling Timber!"

By Sana S. Ahmed and ccameron
09/24/14 | 9:44 a.m. PDT

A student's car is damaged after a large tree falls on The Row.

Spotify's Most Musical Schools in America

By tvillanueva and Pierce Larsen
09/25/14 | 2:21 p.m. PDT

Spotify compiled a list of the top 40 most musical schools in America. Did USC make the cut?