Hosni Mubarak passes away

The former president of the Arab Republic of Egypt has died at the age of 91.

Aaron Melville, Copy Editor

On the day of Feb. 25 in Cairo, Egypt, the former President of the Arab Republic of Egypt Hosni Mubarak passed away at the age of 91 years old. 


Mubarak was born on May 4, 1928 in Kafr El-Musaylhah, in the Monufaya Governorate, just northwest of Cairo. Mubarak grew up there and attended the Egyptian Air Academy, becoming the commander for the Air Force after serving himself. In 1975, he was appointed Vice President to then president Anwar El-Sadat, and served until the year 1981 when El-Sadat was assassinated. 


Mubarak succeeded El-Sadat after his assassination and went on to be the President of Egypt for 30 years. During his time as president, Mubarak tried to combat extremist groups that would attack tourists in the country’s many landmarks and attractions. The economy was also strong, thanks to Mubarak’s good relationships with western countries, like the United States. The United States gave around $1.3 billion in aid, mainly in the form of military aid to the Arab Republic by the end of his presidency in 2011, according to the British Broadcast Corporation (BBC).


Egypt was relatively stable under the rule of Mubarak besides incidents of extremism in more remote parts of Egypt, such as Luxor and Sharm El-Sheikh.


Despite being stable for the most part, Egypt did have problems. There was a noticeable wealth divide in the country, with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer. On Jan. 25, 2011, Egyptians took to the streets of Cairo, Gizeh, Alexandria, and many other cities in Egypt to protest poverty, corruption and unemployment, in what would be known as the “January Revolution”, according to Al Jazeera. Mubarak dispatched the military to try and calm the protests, which in turn became riots, with people calling for Mubarak to step down as president. On the other side, wealthier Egyptians went into the streets to protest on behalf of Mubarak to stay as president. 


One specific place in the city of Cairo was known for its protesters. Tahrir Square, located in the heart of the city, had upwards to 300,000 people calling for Mubarak to be ousted. Over 12,000 people alone were arrested in this small section of downtown Cairo during the protests in the January Revolution, with a number of civilians and officers being killed. 


After the almost three week long rebellion, Mubarak announced that he would step down as president on Feb. 11, 2011. He gave power to the military until they could find a new president to elect. This would take almost a year to achieve, where Muslim Brotherhood member Mohammed Morsi would win and be ousted the same way as Mubarak.


After the January Revolution, Mubarak had repeatedly fell ill and was often staying in military hospitals around Northern Egypt. Mubarak was tried for the deaths of protesters and military members during the revolution, but was acquitted in 2017, stating that it was not his fault. Mubarak was convicted on corruption charges, with him and his sons being sentenced to prison for 3 years. Mubarak was in detention until March 2017, when his charges were cleared according to the National Broadcast Company (NBC). 


Mubarak will be remembered for his so called “iron-fist” ruling of Egypt and the revolution that ousted him.