'A great light has gone out...Nelson Mandela was a hero of our time'

MandelaFollowing the demise of South Africa's anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela, the world expressed grief.

Nelson Mandela died peacefully at the age of 95 at his Johannesburg home on Thursday after a prolonged lung infection. Following the demise of South Africa's anti-apartheid hero, the world expressed grief.

Here are some reactions from across the world to the death of Mandela:

South African President Jacob Zuma: "Our people have lost a father. Although we knew this day was going to come, nothing can diminish our sense of a profound and enduring loss. His tireless struggle for freedom earned him the respect of the world. His humility, passion and humanity earned him their love."

US President Barack Obama: "He achieved more than could be expected of any man.... Today he's gone home, and we've lost one of the most influential, courageous and profoundly good human beings that any of us will share time with on this earth."

British Prime Minister David Cameron: "A great light has gone out in the world. Nelson Mandela was a hero of our time." Former South African President F.W. de Klerk, on CNN: "He was a great unifier and a very, very special man in this regard beyond everything else he did. This emphasis on reconciliation was his biggest legacy."

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon: "Nelson Mandela was a giant for justice and a down-to-earth human inspiration. Nelson Mandela showed what is possible for our world and within each one of us if we believe, dream and work together for justice and humanity."

Former US President Jimmy Carter: "The people of South Africa and human rights advocates around the world have lost a great leader. His passion for freedom and justice created new hope for generations of oppressed people worldwide, and because of him, South Africa is today one of the world's leading democracies."

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