Russia celebrates the life of Nelson Mandela

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Russian delegates and African ambassadors have celebrated the life and times of struggle stalwart and international icon Nelson Mandela.

The celebration comes at a time when Mandela centenary celebrations are taking place in South Africa.

Nelson Mandela and fellow struggle stalwart Oliver Tambo are said to have played an active role in the biliteral agreements between the two countries before the dawn of South Africa’s democracy.

Nelson Mandela’s legacy is far reaching; Russian delegates honoured the late leader in a ceremony.

Stories and fond memories were the order of the day. South Africa’s history has created a platform for the country to build strong relations.

South African embassy’s Sibanda Thusi says: “We have a good story to tell only because President Mandela was able to forgive and we have a lot to learn but we have to learn to live together so South Africa can be a better country.”

The city of Moscow also played a pivotal role in the formation of the new South Africa.

From the 1960s until the early 1990s, the Soviet Union trained thousands of MK cadres in the fight against apartheid.

South African DG Vusumzi Mkhize says: “We are very lucky that we have someone that is iconic as Mandela  – he came here in 1999 that was after or Tambo visited the country.”

“When he came here, he met with the president and formed a relationship to promote the co-operative agreement with South Africa.”

It’s no secret how much the late Nelson Mandela loved the youth.

Russia and South Africa have one of the strongest relationships in the BRICS  countries. This relationship will be highlighted when South Africa hosts the 10th BRICS Summit in July.

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