This day in history: Mandela receives hero's welcome in New York

This day in history: Mandela receives hero's welcome in New York

On this day in history, Nelson Mandela visited New York, United States, and he received a hero's welcome.

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On 20 June, 1990, Nelson Mandela was welcomed as a hero in New York City. According to South African History Online, the American city pulled out all the stops to make Madiba feel welcome and safe.

His security detail was one for the history books. gathered 12 000 city police officers were deployed, along with four super-insulated bomb trucks and 16 teams of demolition experts.

There were also helicopters, boats, a 90-horse mounted unit and 6 200 sawhorse barricades put in place to ensure Mandela was safe during his trip.

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This day in history: Mandela receives heroes welcome in New York

Mandela visits New York in 1990. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons.
Source: UGC

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The then-ANC deputy-president addressed New Yorkers at the steps of the City Hall.

"You, the wonderful citizens of New York, have demonstrated in the most visible manner that we, the oppressed people of South Africa and the ANC, are admired and respected (and) that it is the dying apartheid system that is totally isolated...”

Mandela's visit to America followed only months after he was released from prison by then-SA head of state F.W. de Klerk.

Madiba was released from Robben Island on 11 February, 1990 after spending 27 years behind bars.

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