Egyptian President Mubarak not running for another term

CAIRO, EGYPT: Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak on Tuesday said that he will not run for another term in the next elections, the Haaretz newspaper reported.

The announcement came after a week of mass protests nationwide. On Tuesday, approximately one million people gathered in Tahrir Square in central Cairo.

"I did not have the intention of running in the next election and wanted to spend my life trying to serve the people," Mubarak said. "Now, I want to finish my role while Egypt is at peace."

President Mubarak also asked the Egyptian parliament to hold a session in order to discuss election reform ahead of September presidential elections. Mubarak has been at the helm of the northern African country for 30 years.

"During the next few months I am going to try hard so that we can fulfill a peaceful transition of the regime," the president said at Tahrir Square.

Prior to the president's speech, U.S. President Barack Obama urged Mubarak not to contend in the upcoming elections as well as restraining from pushing his son or other ally as candidate.

On Sunday, Obama spoke with to Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu, and Saudi King Abdullah on Saturday, and to UK Prime Minister Cameron to discuss the ongoing situation in Egypt.

Obama reiterated his focus on opposing violence and calling for restraint. He said he supported universal rights, including the right to peaceful assembly, association, and speech.

The U.S. leader called on the foreign leaders to supporting a peaceful transition to a government responsive to the aspirations of the Egyptian people.

Protests persisted for the seventh day across Egypt. The government has shut down Internet and media. Clashes between security forces and anti-government protesters have killed at least 150 people and injured more than 4,000 others.


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