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On This Day in 1990: FW de Klerk Announced the Release of Mandela After 27 Years in Captivity


On February 10, 1990, South African President F.W. de Klerk announced that black activist Nelson Mandela would be released the next day after 27 years in captivity. Four years later, Mandela became South African President.

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela was a South African anti-apartheid revolutionary, politician, and philanthropist, who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999.

Fact Sheet:
  • Born: 18 July 1918, Mvezo, South Africa
  • Died: 5 December 2013, Houghton Estate, City of Johannesburg Metropolitan Municipality, South Africa
  • Awards: Nobel Peace Prize, Bharat Ratna, more
  • Movies and TV shows: Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom, Death of Apartheid, Dear Mandela

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