Former South African president and anti-apartheid icon Mandela is dead

Johannesburg, South Africa (PANA) - Former South African President and anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela is dead.

South African President Jacob Zuma announced the passing of the revered leader on Thursday on television.

He said Mandela, 95, died "peacefully" at his Johannesburg home on Thursday after a prolonged lung infection.

President Zuma said: "Fellow South Africans, our beloved Nelson Rohlihla Mandela, the founding president of our democratic nation, has departed.

"He passed on peacefully. Our people have lost a father. Although we knew this day was going to come, nothing can diminish our sense of a profound and enduring loss. His tireless struggle for freedom earned him the respect of the world. His humility, passion and humanity, earned him their love."

Tributes have started pouring in with US President Barack Obama and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon leading the way.

President Zuma said Mandela would receive a full state funeral adding that flags would be flown at half mast.

Mandela,95, had been receiving intense home-based medical care for a lung infection after three months in hospital.
-0- PANA MA 5Dec2013

05 december 2013 22:35:43

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