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As news of Nelson Mandela's death spread, current and former heads of state and government, athletes and entertainers, and people around the world spoke out about the life and legacy of the former South African president. Some knew him personally while many only knew him from afar, but they shared how they drew inspiration from his strength and looked to live his message of continuing the struggle against social injustice.
Costa do Sauipe (Brazil) (AFP) - The World Cup draw for Brazil's problem-plagued 2014 showpiece is staged in Costa do Sauipe later Friday as the world mourns the death of Nelson Mandela. The former South African president's role in bringing the World Cup to Africa for the first time was remembered by FIFA president Sepp Blatter after Mandela's death on Thursday. "When he was honoured and cheered by the crowd at Johannesburg’s Soccer City stadium on 11 July 2010, it was as a man of the people, a man of their hearts, and it was one of the most moving moments I have ever experienced," Blatter reminisced. "For him, the World Cup in South Africa truly was 'a dream come true'".
In 2008 just before his 90th birthday, the United States gave Nelson Mandela a special present, striking him from a decades-old terror watch list and ending what US officials called "a rather embarrassing matter." By then the anti-apartheid icon had long left behind the jail cells where he was incarcerated for 27 years, and was already enjoying retirement and his status as one of the most revered statesmen of the 20th century after becoming South Africa's first black president. On Thursday, when Mandela died at age 95, President Barack Obama hailed him as belonging "to the ages" and ordered that flags on US government buildings be flown at half-mast -- a rare tribute to a foreign leader. Yet decades ago many in America did not share in the adulation of Mandela and his African National Congress (ANC), which had been billed a terrorist organization by both South Africa and the United States.