The former president was “conscious and breathing well,” the medical official said early Wednesday. Mubarak arrived at the hospital in cardiac arrest, the official said, and doctors got his heart beating again using a defibrillator. By midnight, he was resting in a suite, said the official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to reporters.
As rumors of Mubarak’s death spread, fireworks crackled across the capital, and a crowd that had gathered earlier in Tahrir Square, the center of the revolt that ousted Mubarak in February 2011, remained large and energetic.
The protesters, heeding a call from the Muslim Brotherhood and other groups, were making a show of force against the generals, whose recent moves have sparked fears of a return to authoritarian rule. The rallies represented an effort to demonstrate that the loose revolutionary coalition that brought down Mubarak has not run out of steam, even as the military chiefs appear to be broadening their authority and emasculating the presidency, probably fearful of the implications of serving under an Islamist statesman.
Officials from the campaign of the Brotherhood’s presidential candidate, Mohamed Morsi, on Tuesday presented purported local-level polling records that they said showed he had defeated opponent Ahmed Shafiq by about 900,000 votes in the weekend runoff. The campaign said it obtained the records from local election officials.
But supporters of Shafiq, who was Mubarak’s last prime minister and is widely thought to have the backing of the ruling generals, continued to insist Tuesday that he had won the election. A campaign spokesman said at a news conference that Shafiq received 51.5 percent of the vote and that Morsi’s assertion of victory was “false.” Official results are expected Thursday.
The public response to the military’s constitutional decree late Sunday that weakened the presidency, and to a court ruling last week that mandated the dissolution of the Islamist-dominated parliament, has been peaceful. But protesters warned Tuesday that it could change.
“If they want it to be Syria, we’ll give them Libya,” protesters chanted in Tahrir Square, which was packed after sunset, as the searing summertime heat subsided.
Salama el-Bahnssawy, 52, traveled to Tahrir from Ismailia, a city along the Suez Canal, with his 5-year-old son, Ziyad. He said he was particularly upset by the dissolution of parliament and said the large crowd, one of the biggest to gather this year, would put pressure on the generals.