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Mapuche Permanent Mission to the United Nations
56, Rue de Monchoisy, 1207, Genève, Switzerland.

Tel: +41-(0)22-320 4974 - e-mail:


Mapuche Mission Press Release: Nelson Mandela Dead

Geneva, December 6th 2013

Yesterday was a sad day for everyone at the Mapuche Mission and surely for everybody who has ever campaigned for human rights and fundamental freedoms for their people. Mandela will be remembered along with Martin Luther King and Mahatma Ghandi as an extraordinary individual who inspired the world with his overriding optimism and faith in humanity.

It seems important to know something about the man’s life and not just to ‘worship’ him as an icon. He was born into poverty in 1918 and was the first person in his family ever to go to school. He joined the African National Congress in 1942 which in 1948 began a campaign of passive resistance against the racist national party and their policy of apartheid. In 1960 the ANC was banned after police killed sixty nine demonstrators, forcing them to form an underground military wing to defend themselves and as their peaceful efforts had led nowhere. Mandela and seven others were given life sentences in 1964.

Finally freed in 1990, after twenty seven years of incarceration, as apartheid laws were relaxed and the ANC became legal again, Mandela was more determined than ever to gain democratic rights for black people in South Africa and to reconcile black and white in the country. After an ordeal that would’ve broken most men, or left them bitter and hateful, he continued to inspire millions with his courage and positivity and finally became the country’s president in its first democratic election in 1994.

We believe we speak for the whole Mapuche Nation in mourning the loss of a true freedom fighter.

Flor Calfunao Paillalef
Apo Werken – Ambassador


The Mapuche Permanent Mission to the United Nations, was established on September 20, 2011 by authorities of the Mapuche nation.