Claiming he “did not intend to seek re-election” this September, Egypt’s embattled President Hosni Mubarak made the vague announcement on state television Tuesday night that he planned to stay put “for the next few months” before leaving office. –KA

Los Angeles Times:

Mubarak was not clear if he would stay in power until the September presidential election.

He blamed unnamed “political forces with private agendas” for exploiting what he deemed “legitimate demands” of the people for democratic reforms. He said the forces bent on creating chaos “threw oil on the fire.”

The president’s statement, coming hours after more than 200,000 protesters streamed into Cairo’s Tahrir Square, was the latest dramatic development as he maneuvered to stay in power amid demonstrations, international pressure to resign and an economy that has slid into turmoil. The decision may ease a bit of the public fury against him, but it was unlikely to stop calls for him to immediately step aside.

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