Cairo, Feb 11 (DPA) Cairo, Feb 11 (IANS) “Egypt if free, Egypt is free”, chanted tens of thousands of jubilant protesters Friday evening, waving banners and placards in downtown Cairo’s Tahrir Square to welcome the announcement of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak finally stepping down after 30 years in power.
Vice President Omar Suleiman had made a one sentence announcement to say that Mubarak, who has left Cairo with his family for the Sharm-el-Sheikh resort in the Sinai, has stepped down.
The protesters had been gathering in increasing numbers at Tahrir Square since Jan 25 to demand Mubarak’s ouster.
Mubarak, who has been continuously ruling the country since 1981, had earlier said that he would be ready to leave after his term ends in September, but not now. He even warned of chaos if he left now.
The protests had turned violent last week, leaving atleast 13 people dead and over 1,000 injured.