ElBaradei: Stunned to hear Egypt gov't say it is 'stable'

January 26, 2011 10:02


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Former director-general of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), Egyptian Mohamed ElBaradei told CNN Tuesday night that he was stunned to hear officials in his country say "the Egyptian government is stable."

The former IAEA head, who is speculated to be mulling candidacy in elections for Egypt's presidency, retorted that "stability is a democratic regime." He said, "We have a parliament right now that has an opposition of three percent. You are insulting the intelligence of the people" by saying that is democracy.

Deflecting questions about his own political aspirations, ElBaradei said that his priority is "to shift Egypt into a democracy, to catch up to the 21st century," where human rights are respected and the people have freedom.

Addressing the recent uprising in Tunisia that uprooted a decades-long dictatorship, he said that the Jasmine Revolution "sent a message to the Arab people that 'yes we can' ... be empowered by the people."

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