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Mandela's life should inspire African youths: Obama

Xinhua | Updated: 2013-06-30 10:04

JOHANNESBURG - US President Barack Obama on Saturday urged the youths of Africa to follow the footsteps of former South African President Nelson Mandela in building a bright future for their countries.  

Obama was addressing young South Africans at the University of Johannesburg in Soweto, where he held a town hall meeting as part of his three-day visit to South Africa.

Mandela's life should inspire African youths: Obama

US President Barack Obama participates in a town hall-style meeting with young African leaders at the University of Johannesburg in Soweto June 29, 2013. [Photo/Agencies]

Obama said Mandela managed to transform South Africa and inspire the world and wished Mandela a quick recovery.

The US President announced his plans to develop what he termed as "the yes we can attitude of young Africans."

Obama said: "We are launching a new programme that is going to give thousands of promising young Africans the opportunity to come to the United States to develop your skills in some of our best colleges and universities."

Hundreds of protesters demonstrated against Obama's visit to South Africa outside the University of Johannesburg Soweto Campus. Police fired stun grenades at those protestors to disperse them.

Similar protests also took place in Pretoria on Friday, and the protests went peacefully.

Protesters demanded that the United States stop its aggressive police which lead to crimes against humanity in relation to the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, Middle East conflict, globalization and global warming.

The visit to South Africa is Obama's second leg of his three-nation African tour that started in Senegal, followed by South Africa and will end in Tanzania.

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