Mubarak, Hosni

Mubarak, Hosni


Came to power at one of Egypt's lowest points. On 6 Oct. 1981 his predecessor, Anwar el-Sadat, was assassinated by Muslim fundamentalists as he reviewed a military parade in Cairo. Vice President Mubarak, shot in the hand during the attack, inherited a country that was buckling under severe economic and political strain. An ongoing internal war with the Islamic fundamentalists. The rest of the Arab world had forsaken Egypt after Sadat's controversial overtures to Israel. 

As vice president he had played an active role in policymaking, and he was a skilled mediator. Almost immediately, he resumed diplomatic relations with other Arab nations and vowed to follow Sadat's lead in keeping peace with Israel. Likewise, he has worked hard to maintain Egypt's ties with both the United States and Russia.

Mubarak has taken a hard line with extremist groups in Egypt. As a result, he has been the target of several assassination plots and one close call. In June 1995, gunmen fired on his motorcade as he arrived in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for a meeting of the Organization for African Unity. He escaped uninjured. Three Egyptian militants were later sentenced to death for the attack. 

Since he took office, Mubarak has revitalized the Egyptian economy and been the driving force behind development throughout the Mideast. More important, he has been pivotal in regional peacekeeping efforts.

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