Egyptian opposition groups vow to end protest in Cairo

Coalition of youth groups says even though they succeeded in ousting Mubarak they will call for weekly demonstrations to maintain pressure on ruling military to implement democratic reforms.

By ASSOCIATED PRESS
February 12, 2011 18:44
2 minute read.
Egyptians clean up garbage and rocks in Cairo

Egyptian protesters clean up 311. (photo credit: AP Photo/Khalil Hamra)

CAIRO — The main coalition of youth and opposition groups in Egypt said Saturday it will end its protest in a central Cairo square after they succeeded in ousting longtime authoritarian leader Hosni Mubarak. But the groups said they will call for weekly demonstrations to maintain pressure on the ruling military to implement democratic reforms.

The group listed its demands at a press conference and said they want hated emergency laws to be lifted, parliament to be dissolved and a committee to amend the constitution, among others. Some protesters not linked to the coalition say they'll stay camped on Tahrir Square, and it's not immediately clear when the downtown area will be cleared.

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Earlier on Saturday, Egypt's military rulers promised the country will abide by its international agreements, a nod to allay concerns that Egypt's peace deal with Israel could be threatened.

The military has also asked the current government, appointed by Mubarak, to continue operating until a new one is formed. It also says it is committed to eventually handing over power to an elected administration.

Saturday's military statement is its first indication of the next steps after Mubarak's fall, but left unanswered the question of how long the current government would stay in place.

Egypt's military relaxed a nighttime curfew Saturday and banned current and ex-government officials from traveling abroad without permission in its first moves since taking power after President Hosni Mubarak's ouster.
Egyptians were hopeful Saturday but faced an uncertain future, with many protesters vowing to stay camped in a central Cairo square until they hear "clear assurances" that their demands for democracy will be met.

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