Mubarak and Sons Detained As Backlash Against Egyptian Army Grows

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Alaa (left) and Gamal Mubarak watching football.
Alaa (left) and Gamal Mubarak watching football. Photo: Khaled Desouki/AFP/Getty Images

Egypt's prosecutor general announced via Facebook today that former president Hosni Mubarak and his sons Gamal and Alaa will be detained for fifteen days. They are being investigated for allegations of corruption, squandering public money, and abuse of political title for personal gain. Al Jazeera producer Adam Markay tweeted that Suzanne Mubarak, the deposed autocrat's wife, is also being investigated. Mubarak's sons were taken away in a police van as a crowd of 2,000 protesters pelted the vehicle with water bottles, stones, and flip-flops, a sign of disrespect. Gamal, who was being groomed as a potential successor, was the architect of Egypt's privatization program that brought in billions in foreign investment — and widened the economic divide between rich and poor. His billionaire friends held senior positions in his father's ruling party and the government. Protesters who toppled the regime have been demanding a swift prosecution for Mubarak as suspicion that the army is delaying calls for justice grows. Major-General Mohammed el-Khatib told the crowd, "Brothers, whatever you wanted, you have got ... 15 days."

Doctors say Mubarak is in "somewhat" good health after being taken to the intensive care unit for a "heart crisis" yesterday during questioning. But that hasn't stopped rumors that the health scare was faked. Al Jazeera's Zeina Khodr said:

"A lot of Egyptians, particularly in Tahrir Square, said this is just ridiculous, this is a lie, it's a game ... they even accuse the army - the new rulers in this country in the interim phase - of actually orchestrating this to find some way out so Mubarak won't be prosecuted."

The army, once believed to be on the side of the protesters for refusing Mubarak's call for suppression, is also under fire for sentencing a 26-year-old blogger, Maikel Nabil, to three years in prison for criticizing the military. Mona Seif, a postgraduate student at Cairo University who helped spread the uprising, tweeted about the army, "They LIED! told lawyers trial postponed & after they left found out he was sentenced & already transfered to prison."

Egypt detains Mubarak and sons [Al Jazeera English]
Egypt: “We are all Maikel Nabil” [Global Voices]