Nelson Mandela Dies at Age 95

Nelson Mandela, considered a symbol of freedom and world peace after battling for an extended time a lung infection

The world weeps. One of the most important men in recent history, Nelson Mandela, has died at age 95. He was the first democratically elected president of South Africa, Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 and a tireless advocate for human rights.

How will you remember to Mandela?

Mandela’s health had sharply deteriorated this year after a relapse for a lung infection that forced him to commit him repeatedly.

President Jacob Zuma made ​​the announcement during the night South Africa: Mandela died at his home in Houghton, surrounded by his wife Graca Machel and their families. It was 8.50 pm in South Africa when the “father of the nation“, as they call it, they died.

Before yesterday, his daughter Makaziwe Mandela had said his father was a brave and courageous even in his deathbed man.

Born 18 July 1918 in Umtata, then capital of the named territory of Transkei, was the first South African president democratically elected by universal suffrage, as well as having received more than 250 international awards over four decades, including the 1993 Award Nobel Peace Prize.

His career as a lawyer and politician began law school career, which he graduated in 1942. Ten years later he opened the first black law firm and lawyers joining the fight for the liberation of the black majority and the party one day preside, the African National Congress (ANC).

Before becoming president of South Africa, Mandela led various movements and strikes against apartheid, and even an armed struggle that was brought to the prison on Robben Island where he remained for 18 of his twenty-seven years of imprisonment.

Later he was transferred to Cape Town in 1982, in which an international campaign was launched for his release.

Road to the presidency

The government of President Frederik Willem de Klerk released Mandela in February 1990, after legalizing the ANC and other political parties.

Mandela assumed leadership of the ANC and led negotiations for a multi-racial democracy in South Africa, which was achieved in 1994 with the first democratic elections by universal suffrage. Mandela won the election and was president from 1994 to 1999.

On assuming office as president gave up a third of the salary and created the Nelson Mandela Children’s Fund.

During his term, and subsequent thereto, Mandela exercised a supreme moral authority in the various wars that ravaged the black continent, posing as mediator.

Inside the office, the last outstanding mediation Mandela was in March 1999, negotiations between the Libyan regime of Muammar al-Gaddafi and the governments of the U.S. and the UK for the suspension of UN sanctions in the country North African, in exchange for delivery to the Scottish justice for his trial in the Netherlands of the two Libyans accused of perpetrating the attack on Pan Am plane in 1988 was destroyed in flight over the town of Lockerbie.

Since leaving the presidency, he held several positions of leadership in several areas, including negotiations on the conflict in the Great Lakes region.

However, the deterioration of his health slowly it was moving away from such activities.

Mandela was particularly vulnerable to respiratory problems due to tuberculosis contracted during his imprisonment, which took him to the hospital several times. South Africa and the world well lost one of the greatest fighters for human rights.

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