CAIRO - Conflicting reports about the health conditions of deposed president Hosni Mubarak have created a fresh sense of uncertainty in Egypt, as the country is awaiting the results of this week's presidential vote.
"Contradiction around the death of Mubarak after he suffers a clot to the brain," wrote Al-Ahram newspaper.
"Most critical 48 hours in Egypt's history," read below the headline, in reference to the expected official results of weekend's presidential vote between Muslim Brotherhood's candidate Mohamed Mursi and former premier Ahmed Shafiq.
Conflicting reports emerged late Tuesday, July 19, over Mubarak's health.
The state news agency MENA reported that Mubarak, 84, was clinically dead after suffering a brain clot.
But the report was later denied by senior officers and military sources, saying the health of the former president was worsening.
General Said Abbas, a member of the ruling military council, told Reuters that, while Mubarak had suffered a stroke, "any talk of him being clinically dead is nonsense."
Another military source said he was in a coma and on life support, while a third military source described the former leader as "almost stable," without elaborating.
Private television Al-Hayat broadcast video which it said was of Mubarak's move. The images showed a patient on a stretcher being transferred from an ambulance into hospital.
Al-Arabiya television said Mubarak's wife Suzanne arrived on Tuesday night at the Maadi facility, where Mubarak was moved Tuesday from a prison hospital following reports about his deteriorating health.
"Mubarak in a coma between life and death," wrote Al-Akhbar, below a headline highlighting the row between Morsi and Shafik over who won
"Future president in the realm of the unknown."
The conflicting reports about Mubarak's health added to the current uncertainty about in the country.
"The news about Mubarak's health is all speculation, Maher Eid Hemdan, a 59-year-old pensioner, in central Cairo, told Reuters.
We should depend on reality. We can't keep following rumors.
Mubarak's health has been a subject of frequent speculation since he was jailed for life on June 2.
Egyptians protested when he was not sentenced to death over his involvement in the killing of more than 850 protestors during last year's revolt that swept Mubarak from power.
Many others suspect fellow officers, who pushed him aside after 30 years to appease the protesters, of conniving to give him a more comfortable confinement.
Mubarak was moved Tuesday from a prison hospital to a military hospital after reports about his deteriorating health.
"The former president's condition is critical after it deteriorated because of a lack of good care and treatment inside the Tora prison hospital, so he was taken to the nearest hospital," Mubarak's defense lawyer Farid al-Deeb told Al-Ahram.
Mubarak's legal team has been pressing to have him moved from the prison hospital to a better-equipped facility, saying he was not receiving adequate treatment for his condition. However, prison authorities previously refused to let him go.
The confusion about Mubarak's health comes amid conflicting reports about the winner of this weekend's presidential runoff vote.
The Muslim Brotherhood said its candidate Mohamed Mursi won most votes of the runoff, a claim contested by his rival Shafiq.
A panel overseeing the election is set to announce the official results of the vote on Thursday."As for the elections, may the right man win," said Hemdan.
Reproduced with permission from OnIslam.net