News / Middle East

Egypt's Ahmed Shafiq Represents Old Guard

Ahmed Shafiq as Egypt's prime minister, February 13, 2011 (AP).
Ahmed Shafiq as Egypt's prime minister, February 13, 2011 (AP).
VOA News
Egypt's Ahmed Shafiq was former president Hosni Mubarak's last prime minister before he lost power in last year's pro-democracy protests.

The former Air Force commander was appointed prime minister in hopes of appeasing the popular revolt.  But because of that connection to  Mubarak, he is viewed with some suspicion by activists involved in the 2011 movement and polarized voters.  

Shafiq graduated from the Egyptian Air Force Academy and later earned a doctorate.  He has a storied military history. His campaign said he shot down two Israeli planes during wars with the Jewish state in 1967 and early 1973.  

During his campaign, Shafiq presented himself as the candidate with both military and civilian experience, a combination he said that is key to Egypt's shift toward democracy.

He also served as Egypt's minister of aviation, during which time he oversaw the modernization of Egypt's airports and boosted the country's tourism industry. Still, he remains a polarizing figure.

Related report by VOA’s Jeff Seldin
Former PM Shafiq Making Strong Bid to Lead Egypti
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Jeff Seldin
May 25, 2012 8:14 PM
He was former president Hosni Mubarak's last prime minister and a leader of the old guard. Now Ahmed Shafiq’s appears to be making a strong push for a run-off spot in Egypt’s presidenial race. VOA’s Jeff Seldin takes a look at Shafiq’s bid.

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