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Former Gov. Bill Richardson on Mandela: “The world’s greatest statesman is gone”

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson released a statement to the Journal today regarding former South Africa President Nelson Mandela’s death.

Here’s the full statement:

“Nelson Mandela’s death leaves a huge void in the world. The world’s greatest statesman is gone. I will never forget his grace, his kindness, his friendship and his diplomatic skills as he helped me navigate the Congolese civil war in the late 90s. Rest in peace, Mandiba.”

Richardson crossed paths with Mandela in the 1990s, while Richardson was serving as the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations.

The website of Richardson’s Santa Fe-based diplomacy center details how the former Democratic governor worked with Mandela to ensure a peaceful transfer of power after a rebellion in the African nation of Zaire (also known as the Congo).

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