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Crowds brave rain for Mandela's memorial

Source: Reuters - Tue, 10 Dec 2013 10:28 AM
Author: Reuters
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Thousands of mourners braved South Africa's summer rain as they packed the Soccer City stadium in Johannesburg for a national memorial for Nelson Mandela on Tuesday (December 10).

Despite pouring rains, the atmosphere inside the stadium was celebratory, with people in colorful wear dancing, blowing "vuvuzelas" - plastic horns - and singing songs from the country's anti-apartheid struggle.

It was in the same stadium where Mandela faced crowds when he was released from prison 23 years ago.

The memorial event will pay tribute to a life of imprisonment and political struggle that ended in triumph and consecrated Mandela as a global symbol of integrity and forgiveness.

The fact that the visiting leaders - more than 90 are expected - include some from nations still locked in antagonism, such as Cuba and the United States, adds resonance to the homage being held at the gigantic bowl-shaped stadium, the venue of the 2010 World Cup final.

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