European Leaders Pile Pressure on Mubarak

World | February 11, 2011, Friday // 16:34|  views

Furious Egyptian protesters vowed to step up their revolt against President Hosni Mubarak's regime on Friday, pouring back into the streets of Cairo after he refused to quit office. EPA/BGNES

European governments have voiced both concern and impatience with Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak, who refused Thursday night to immediately leave office.

In his own televised remarks after Mubarak's speech, French President Nicolas Sarkozy said it was inevitable that the Egyptian president would leave office.

Sarkozy said he hoped Egypt's fledgling democracy took the time to get political training, structures and principles and not move toward religious dictatorship.

Britain's foreign secretary William Hague called for an urgent but orderly transition of power, while Germany's foreign minister said Mubarak's speech left the international community more worried than before.

In Brussels, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso expressed hopes for a peaceful transition in Egypt.

Speaking alongside Spanish Prime Minister Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero - and  just before Mubarak's speech - Barroso said the events happening in Egypt reminded him of his native Portugal's own transition to democracy from dictatorship.

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Tags: head, chief, policy, Catherine, Ashton, Egypt, Cairo, Brussels, European Union, EU, foreign, Europeans, egyptians, minister


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