Mass protests reflect aspirations of Egyptian people: India

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

NEW DELHI - Marking a shift in its stand on the popular uprising in Egypt, India Tuesday described mass protests in the north African country as an articulation of aspirations of Egyptian people for reform and hoped that the current situation will be resolved in a peaceful manner.

India continues to closely follow the mass protests in Egypt which are an articulation of the aspirations of the Egyptian people for reform, Indias external affairs ministry said in a statement.

It is hoped that the current situation will be resolved in a peaceful manner, in the best interests of the people of Egypt, said the ministry.

India wishes that Egypt, a fellow developing country with which she enjoys close and traditional ties, will continue to be a strong and stable nation, contributing to peace and prosperity in the region, it added.

Indias stand on Tuesday marks an important shift from its circumspect stance of the current agitation being an internal affair of Egypt.

On Monday, External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna described the unrest in Egypt as an internal affair of that country and hoped for a peaceful resolution of the standoff.

New Delhis reaction came as tens of thousands of protesters gathered in Cairos Tahrir Square Tuesday and many more were streaming in to participate in the march of a million as the movement to end President Hosni Mubaraks 30-year rule gained momentum across Egypt.

Some 100,000 protesters thronged Cairos downtown Tahrir Square for a march to the Presidential Palace, a day after the army said that it wont be using force.

With the upheaval showing no sign of abating, around 600 Indians returned to India in special flights arranged by Air India over the last two days.

Filed under: Diplomacy

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