(CAIRO) -- After 17 days of demonstrations, protesters' demands in Egypt may finally have been heard after a military official made an unexpected announcement.
ABC News reports that Egyptian Army Chief of Staff Sami Eman made his way through the crowd at Tahrir Square Thursday, announcing over a microphone, "All your demands will be met tonight."
When asked by an ABC News reporter whether that meant that President Hosni Mubarak would leave office, Eman replied, "It ends tonight."
Eman ended his announcement with, "Allahu Akhbar," meaning "God is great."
The crowd reacted by singing the national anthem.
People at a makeshift hospital in the square also jumped for joy, hugging and kissing one another as they heard the news.
Egypt's Minister of Information would not confirm or deny to ABC News that Mubarak will in fact be stepping down. He only said that officials will be holding meetings to discuss the next steps.
"You will know soon," he told ABC News.
Over in the U.S., CIA Director Leon Panetta, speaking before a House intelligence committee Thursday, said "I have the same information you do, there is a strong likelihood that Mubarak may step down this evening."
Mubarak is expected to address the country Thursday night from the Presidential Palace, according to State TV.
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