Obama repeats call for transition now in Egypt

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U.S. President Barack Obama said on Sunday that Egypt is "not going to go back to what it was" and a transition must begin immediately.

In an interview with Fox television network, Obama said Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak knows what he is going to do in face of mass protests calling for an end to his 30-year rule.

"Only he knows what he's going to do," Obama said. "Here's what we know is that Egypt is not going to go back to what it was. The U.S. can't forcefully dictate, but what we can do is say the time is now for you to start making a change in your country."

He also said that it is clear the Egyptian people want freedom as well as free and fair elections, stressing that "they want a representative government, they want a responsive government."

"We've said, you have to start a transition now," he said of Mubarak.

Mubarak resigned as head of Egypt's ruling National Democratic Party on Saturday. Two days earlier, Egypt's Vice President Omar Suleiman announced that neither Mubarak nor his son Gamal would run for presidential elections in September.

Mass anti-government protests erupted on Jan. 25 in Egypt. Obama made a public call on Feb. 1 for an orderly transition in the Middle East state that must be "meaningful," "peaceful" and " must begin now."

Suleiman held talks on Sunday with representatives of political parties including the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood and protesters, trying to find a way out of the current crisis.

They agreed to form a committee, which will include the judiciary and a number of political figures, to study and propose constitutional amendments and required legislative amendments, before the first week of March.

Obama told Fox News that he thinks the Muslim Brotherhood is one faction in Egypt and does not have majority support.

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