Mystery Solved: Missing Google Executive Played Key Role in Egypt Uprising

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(Amr Abdallah Dalsh / Reuters)

Yesterday, Egyptian authorities came clean on the whereabouts of Wael Ghonim, the Google executive who has been missing for more than a week.

(More on TIME.com: See photos of the protests in Egypt’s Tahrir Square.)

Ghonim was arrested, along with a band of other tech-savvy protesters, for his role in the Egyptian revolt. Since last year, he has been an administrator of one of the Facebook pages that helped fuel the movement. Authorities reportedly plan to release him today.

(More on NewsFeed: See how China has censored news concerning the Egypt protests.)

The Wall Street Journal reports that during the initial demonstrations, Ghonim wrote on his Facebook status, “I said one year ago that the Internet will change the political scene in Egypt and some [f]riends made fun of me.” He disappeared the next day.

Ghonim began working for Google in Egypt during November 2008, as a product and marketing manager for Google’s functions in the Middle East. Since January of last year, he moved to Google’s Dubai office to become the head of marketing for Google Middle East and North Africa.

(More on TIME.com: Read about how one young man found the revolution.)

Idealized in the streets of Cairo, he is set to become the poster child of Egypt’s revolution. Protestors carried signs with his name, declaring that they would not leave Tahrir Square until he was set free. (via Wall Street Journal)

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