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Thousands pay last tribute to Nelson Mandela in South Africa

SOUTH AFRICA  --  (ABC)     A massive international tribute for Nelson Mandela took place this morning in South Africa.

Thousands of South Africans and hundreds of foreign dignitaries and guests gathered at a soggy stadium near Johannesburg today to pay tribute to the civil rights leader who died last week. 
   
The world descended on Johannesburg to celebrate the life of Nelson Mandela.
Tens of thousands singing and dancing in a TORRENTIAL downpour -- in African culture that's a sign.   It means that your gods are welcoming you.

Four U.S. presidents - Obama, Bush, Clinton and Carter joined over 100 heads of states at  a 94,000-seat soccer stadium. Despite the world leaders present, security appeared lax.

In an unexpected moment, President Obama greeted Cuban leader Raul Castro - showing that even nations with a frosty history could come together to honor the icon South Africans called Madiba.

Madiba would emerge as the last great liberator of the 20th century. // like Dr. King, he give potent voice to the claims of the oppressed and the moral
necessity of racial justice..

Mandela's life-long fight for freedom and justice remembered through song Nelson Mandela.Tatamadiba, and prayer..

Three of Mandela's grandchildren took the stage.
Rich or poor, men, women and children must live side by side dreaming the same dream.

Residents of Mandela's home village watched the memorial live on TV.  The former president will be buried there on Sunday. before the burial, South Africans will get a final chance to say goodbye over the next three days. Mandela's body will lie in state in the country's capital