Monday, February 7, 2011

Mubarak offered refuge in Germany

German parliamentarians have agreed to allow the out-of-favor Egyptian president into Germany for an extended health checkup as anti-Mubarak protests enter their 14th day.

Legislators from Chancellor Angela Merkel's ruling coalition and their Free Democratic partners welcomed the idea to give President Hosni Mubarak what they called a face-saving way to leave power.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, however, refused to comment on the issue during a speech on a local German television.

Westerwelle said the government would not make any speculation on such crucial matters.

This comes after US media reported that Mubarak would depart for Germany as part of an exit strategy to allow the transition of power in Egypt.

The deputy head of the Germany's Left Party, Jan van Aken, earlier said there were images showing German-made weapons being used by the Mubarak regime against protesters.

The US is sending warships and other military assets to Egypt as anti-government protests gain momentum.

Two US warships have already arrived in the Red Sea, one of which is carrying up to 800 troops.

Officials in Washington say the US is preparing for a possible evacuation of Americans from Egypt.

Meanwhile, the Pentagon has denied contemplating military intervention in Egypt.

It stressed that sending American warships solely serves the purpose of evacuating US citizens in the event that the situation deteriorates.

Meanwhile, a US aircraft carrier has been ordered to abort its mission and stay in the Mediterranean.

The developments come as the opposition says the regime's proposed reforms are far from enough.

Millions of Egypt ions are protesting against President Mubarak's three-decade rule.

People from all walks of life are flooding into Cairo's Liberation Square and many have been spending nights at the square despite heavy military presence.

Hostility toward the United States is widespread among the protesters as they hold Washington responsible for Mubarak's grip on power. Demonstrators say they will not leave the streets until Mubarak steps down.

Meanwhile, Egypt's main opposition group, the Muslim Brotherhood, has hailed the Leader of Iran's Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei for supporting the Egyptian revolution.

A senior member of the Muslim Brotherhood, Kamal al-Halbavi expressed his gratitude towards Ayatollah Khamenei and all those who backed the Egyptian revolution.

Al-Halbavi added that as many political parties are active in Egypt, the national constitution should change to let people choose their parliamentary representatives.

He also called for free and fair elections after President Mubarak's ouster, saying people themselves should decide what kind of government they want.

Al-Halbavi added that the nation's will must be respected even if they decide to establish an Islamic government.

Ayatollah Khamenei said on Friday that the recent developments in North Africa are the result of the "Islamic awakening, which followed the great [Islamic] Revolution of the Iranian nation."

The Leader also described Mubarak as the "lackey of the Zionist regime [of Israel]."

Meanwhile, graphic video footage has emerged from Egypt which shows a protester shot dead by police.

The video shows a man approaching armed security forces. He opens his jacket facing the police, in an apparent attempt to show he is unarmed.

However, the security forces shoot him as he turns to walk away.

The incident is said to have taken place on January 28th in Alexandria.

More than 300 people are estimated to have been killed since the protests began two weeks ago.

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