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Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Egypt: seven years since the revolution


As Egypt votes in presidential elections, here are key events in the turbulent country since the 2011 uprising that ended the 30-year rule of strongman Hosni Mubarak.

2011: Mubarak falls

January 25: Thousands of Egyptians, inspired by the Tunisian revolt that toppled dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, protest in Cairo and elsewhere demanding Mubarak’s overthrow. Police disperse them.

January 28: Protesters across the country clash with police as the government cuts mobile and internet networks. 

Demonstrators attack police stations and force security personnel to withdraw from the streets. Mubarak sacks his cabinet and deploys the army.

February 11: After days of non-stop protests centred on Cairo’s Tahrir Square, Mubarak’s newly appointed vice president Omar Suleiman announces on television that the president has resigned and the army is in charge.

August 3: Mubarak goes on trial for involvement in the killing of protesters and corruption. He is later sentenced to life in jail but an appeals court exonerates him.

2012: Morsi elected

June 30: Mohamed Morsi from the powerful Muslim Brotherhood organisation wins 51.7 percent of the vote to become Egypt’s first civilian democratically elected president.

August 12: Following a massacre of troops in the Sinai Peninsula by jihadists and a protest against Morsi at their funeral, Morsi dismisses the military chief and replaces him with General Abdel Fattah al-Sisi.

2013: Army ousts Morsi

July 3: After massive protests against Morsi’s divisive rule, the military led by Sisi overthrows and detains him. Morsi is later put on trial.

August 14: Police disperse two pro-Morsi protest camps in Cairo, killing about 700 people in clashes within hours. Islamists respond by attacking Christian properties, accusing the minority of supporting Morsi’s overthrow. 

President Sisi

June 8, 2014: Sisi is elected president with 96.9 percent of the vote.

November: Jihadists who have killed scores of policemen and soldiers in the Sinai announce they have joined the Islamic State group (IS).

October 31, 2015: A Russian airliner carrying tourists from an Egyptian beach resort explodes after taking off, killing all 224 people on board. IS says it planted a bomb on the plane.

January 10, 2016: A new parliament composed mainly of Sisi backers holds its inaugural session.

March 24, 2017: Mubarak goes free, having been acquitted of involvement in killing protesters and serving three years for corruption.

 2017: Sisi wins support

April 3: President Donald Trump welcomes Sisi to the White House and says he is doing a “fantastic job”.

April 23: Sisi receives a royal welcome from King Salman of Saudi Arabia as he lands in Riyadh to boost ties after months of tension.

October 24: French President Emmanuel Macron declines to publicly criticise the rights record of Sisi, accused by watchdog groups of abuses, during his visit to Paris.

December 11: Egypt and Russia sign a contract for the building of Egypt’s first nuclear power plant during a visit to Cairo by President Vladimir Putin.

2018: Rivals sidelined

January 23: Former armed forces chief of staff Sami Anan is excluded from the March 26 presidential election a few days after announcing his candidacy. He is detained, accused of illegally announcing his intention to stand.

Several other potential rivals to the presidency either withdraw or are jailed. February 13: More than a dozen human rights groups say the elections will be “neither free nor fair”.