Updated at 5:54 p.m. ET
Following Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak's announcement on Egyptian State Television Thursday that he would be transferring some powers to his vice president, but not stepping down, CNN reported that angry crowds were moving toward the state TV outlet.
Protestors were angry that the president had not agreed to step down, as they had been anticipating all day. It was close to midnight in Cairo, but the crowds appeared huge and very angry.
"Game over," said one protester.
ambassador Sameh Shoukry told CNN that the upshot of Mubarak's transfer
of authority Thursday was that the "de jure [legally] head of state is
Mubarak," but that "the de facto president is
Vice President Omar Suleman."
he had been instructed by his government to clarify the issue. That was
after protesters were unsatisfied with that transfer of authority as
opposed to Mubarak actually stepping down,
which they had called for.
transferred all powers to the president," said the ambassador, who added
that Vice President Suleman now has the power to end the state of
emergency. But the ambassador could not say whether
Mubarak had the ability to reclaim any of the powers he had
Speaking on Fox News, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said the president's speech may have made the situation into even more of a crisis than it already was.
McCain said he was watching Fox coverage, which had the protests on three screens at once. McCain said that it looked like "the volatility" of the situation "has been racheted up dramatically."
In a speech, according to a CNN translation, Vice President Omar Suleman told the protesters Thursday not to listen to the "satellite stations" that "have no objective but to have sedition among people" and to mar the country's image.
The Committee to Protect Journalists has reported that government officials and supporters have painted media outlets as harboring hidden agendas, ramping up the threat to journalists reporting on the protests.
Journalists have been deliberately targeted by government supporters, and there was some concern Thursday that Suleman's speech could prompt a new round or such detentions and attacks.
Wolf Blitzer interpreted "satellite stations" as meaning Al Jazeera and other Arab-language satellite channels, while CNN host and commentator Fareed Zakaria said he thought they probably meant CNN as well.
With the state TV building reportedly ringed by tanks and the Presidential Guard, a confrontation there could become a key test of how strong the opposition to Mubarak is.
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