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Posted on Sustainabilitank.info on December 9th, 2013
by Pincas Jawetz (pj@sustainabilitank.info)

 

 

Press release

 

Kofi Annan, Jimmy Carter and fellow Elders travel to South Africa for Nelson Mandela’s funeral.

A delegation of Elders including Kofi Annan, Martti Ahtisaari, Jimmy Carter and Mary Robinson will travel to South Africa to attend the memorial service for Nelson Mandela on Tuesday 10 December.

 

A delegation of The Elders is traveling to South Africa this week to honour the memory of their founder Nelson Mandela.

 

The delegation, led by former UN Secretary-General and Chair of The Elders Kofi Annan, also includes former Finnish President Martti Ahtisaari, veteran UN diplomat Lakhdar Brahimi, former US President Jimmy Carter and former Irish President Mary Robinson.

 

As part of the official state funeral, they will attend the memorial service for Nelson Mandela at the FNB stadium in Johannesburg on Tuesday 10 December 2013, where they will join fellow Elders Graca Machel and Archbishop Desmond Tutu.

 

The entrepreneur Richard Branson and the musician Peter Gabriel, who brought the idea of The Elders to Nelson Mandela, will travel to South Africa with the delegation.

 


 

Nelson Mandela and The Elders

 

Nelson Mandela founded The Elders in Johannesburg on his 89th birthday, 18 July 2007. With the help of Grac?a Machel and Desmond Tutu, he brought together ten ‘Elders’ – independent, progressive leaders committed to peace, justice and human rights – to work together on global problems including peace-building and reconciliation in war-affected regions, sustainable development and equality for girls and women.

 

The Elders are Martti Ahtisaari, Kofi Annan (Chair), Ela Bhatt, Lakhdar Brahimi, Gro Harlem Brundtland (Deputy Chair), Fernando Henrique Cardoso, Jimmy Carter, Hina JilaniGraça MachelMary Robinson and Ernesto Zedillo. Desmond Tutu is an Honorary Elder.

 

At the group’s launch in 2007, Nelson Mandela called on The Elders to act as “a fiercely independent and robust force for good, tackling complex and intractable issues – especially those that are not popular.” After founding The Elders, Nelson Mandela did not play an active role, but he remained an Honorary Elder and the inspiration for The Elders’ work. In May 2010, the Elders were reunited with Nelson Mandela during one of the group’s biannual meetings, in Johannesburg.

 

Since 2007, the Elders have worked on peace-building efforts in Co?te d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Israel and Palestine, the Korean Peninsula, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Sudan and South Sudan, and Zimbabwe. They have also worked to encourage inclusive and peaceful transitions in countries affected by change in the Middle East and North Africa. The Elders have always promoted sustainable development and equality for girls and women.
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