Egypt to lift decades old state of emergency

Last Updated: Wednesday, January 25, 2012 - 00:10

Cairo: Egypt`s military ruler has decreed a partial lifting of the nation`s hated emergency laws, saying the draconian laws will remain applicable to crimes committed by "thugs."

Field Marshal Hussein Tantawi said in a televised address to the nation on Tuesday that the emergency laws would be lifted effective Wednesday, the first anniversary of the start of the popular uprising that toppled longtime authoritarian ruler Hosni Mubarak.

Tantawi and the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces he chairs took over the reins of power when Mubarak stepped down.

His decision to partially lift the decades-old laws, which give police far-reaching powers, will likely not satisfy rights groups that have objected to the repeated use by the military of the term "thugs" to justify crackdown on protesters.

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First Published: Tuesday, January 24, 2012 - 21:20

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