Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi

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With Parliamentary elections due next week, Chris Bowlby charts the career of 76 year old Field Marshal Mohamed Hussein Tantawi, the key figure in Egypt's new political crisis.

A young military officer at the time of Suez, Tantawi went on to fight against the Israelis in the wars of 1967 and 1973.

Rising through the military ranks, he was appointed Defence Minister by President Hosni Mubarak in 1991.

Known as a courteous but inscrutable figure, Tantawi came to be viewed as the loyal heir apparent to President Mubarak.

But when the democracy demonstrators of Tahrir Square demanded the President's resignation earlier this year, it was his right hand man Mohamed Tantawi who told the longstanding premier that his time was up.

Nine months later the demonstrators are back, frustrated by the slow pace of political change. And this time they are demanding Tantawi's resignation.

Producer: Kate O'Hara

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14 minutes

Last on

Sun 27 Nov 2011 17:40

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