'This Week' Transcript: Crisis in Egypt

(voice-over): And with calm restored to the square, the protesters were left to watch and wait.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

AMANPOUR: And so today, for the first time after this incredible week, things look a bit back to normal. There is traffic. Banks have been open for several hours today. And also, an unprecedented political process is underway. For the first time in the history of this country, the government has now met with members of the Muslim Brotherhood and other opposition groups, including members of the youth movement. But the Muslim brotherhood is banned here, and yet the powerful Vice President Omar Suleiman has now been meeting with them.

They've had meetings to which they've said they've organized a committee to lift the repressive state of emergency that's been in effect for decades and also to lift press restrictions on the state press here, that they will be free and able to work without any censorship. We discussed all this in my exclusive interview with Omar Suleiman.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

AMANPOUR: You said that you would start a dialogue with the opposition parties.

SULEIMAN: Yes.

AMANPOUR: Including Mr. ElBaradei?

SULEIMAN: No, ElBaradei is not one of the opposition. He has his own group, which -- related to the Brother Muslimhood (ph) or have links with Brother Muslimhood (ph). And Brother Muslimhood (ph) ask me that they want to open a dialogue with me without Mr. ElBaradei.

AMANPOUR: What do you understand by "transition must happen now," as the United States is saying and many other countries are saying?

SULEIMAN: It is a process starting by national dialogue, which has started this -- this morning, and we will continue tomorrow and after tomorrow. We want the young people to know that all your demands, all your requests we respond (inaudible) and we promise that we will do, and we need quiet time to implement these things to happen.

AMANPOUR: What is your fear if President Mubarak was to say, "I've had enough." He told me that he's had enough, 62 years of public service and he wants -- he wants to go, but not quite yet. What are the concerns? Why would he not go now?

SULEIMAN: We don't want tears in our country (ph). If President Mubarak would say that "I'm leaving now," who would take over? In the constitution, that means the -- the speaker would take over. I think with this atmosphere, that means that the other people who have their own agenda will make instability in our country.

AMANPOUR: Will you present yourself as a candidate for president?

SULEIMAN: No, no. According to this constitution, I cannot. I am not from -- from any party. I'm not belonging to any party or to any group, which I cannot be candidate as a constitution.

AMANPOUR: If it was possible, would you run for president?

SULEIMAN: I don't think so.

AMANPOUR: Why?

SULEIMAN: Well, I'm became old man (ph). I did a lot for the country. And I have no urges for to be president of this country. When the president asked me to be vice president, I accepted directly just to help the president in this critical time.

AMANPOUR: When you see what's happening on the streets of Egypt, of Tunisia, and now of Jordan and Yemen and Syria, what do you think? These are young people who want a different world.

SULEIMAN: This is -- this is the (inaudible) current (ph) who push these people.

AMANPOUR: You think that?

SULEIMAN: Yes.

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