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11 Facts about Nelson Mandela

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  1. Nelson Mandela was the president of South Africa from 1994-1999. He was the first black president of South Africa, and the first president to be elected in a fully representative election.^[BBC. "Nelson Mandela 1918-2013." BBC News. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  2. Nelson Mandela's government focused on destroying the Apartheid government in the country, which had focused on racial segregation enforced by the law.^["Truth Commission: South Africa." United States Institute of Peace. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  3. In school, Mandela studied law and became one of South Africa’s first black lawyers.^[Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory. "Biography." Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  4. In the 1950s, he was elected leader of the youth wing of the African National Congress (ANC) liberation movement.^[Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory. "Biography." Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  5. When the government prohibited the ANC for racial reasons, Mandela organized a secret military movement. He had previously been involved in peaceful protests but when they were met with violence from the government he went on to support an armed movement.^[Sampson, Anthony. Mandela: the authorized biography. New York: Knopf :, 1999.]
  6. Mandela was imprisoned from 1962-1990 for treason and conspiracy against the government. He was sentenced to life in prison, but was released early when the ANC became legal again.^[Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory. "Biography." Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  7. While he was in prison, Mandela was a symbol to rally behind for the oppressed in South Africa who were fighting for rights.^[Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory. "Biography." Nelson Mandela Foundation. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  8. Mandela is considered the father of Modern South Africa. He was instrumental in tearing down the oppressive government and installing democracy.^[Bramble, Tom. "The legacy of Nelson Mandela." The Socialist Worker. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  9. Mandela received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 for peacefully destroying the Apartheid regime and laying the foundation for democracy. In addition to the Nobel Piece Prize, he won over 250 other awards.^[A&E Television Networks. "Nelson Mandela." History.com. Accessed April 22. 2014. .]
  10. After retirement from politics, Mandela started the Nelson Mandela Foundation that focused on combating HIV/AIDS and supported rural development and school construction.^[A&E Television Networks. "Nelson Mandela." History.com. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
  11. In 2009, the United Nations proclaimed Mandela’s birthday (July 18th) to be Nelson Mandela International Day. The holiday asks people to spend 67 minutes doing something good for others, which represents the 67 years he spent working toward change.^[A&E Television Networks. "Nelson Mandela." History.com. Accessed April 22, 2014. .]
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