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Mandela discharged from hospital

Former South African president Nelson Mandela was discharged on Saturday after spending more than a week in hospital for treatment of pneumonia, raising global concern about the health of the 94-year-old anti-apartheid leader. "(He) has been discharged from hospital today, 6 April, following a sustained and gradual improvement in his general condition," the South African presidency said on Saturday.

It was the third health scare in four months for the Nobel Peace Prize laureate, who became South Africa's first black president in 1994 and became a global symbol of tolerance and the struggle for equality.

He was in hospital briefly in early March for a check-up and was hospitalised in December for nearly three weeks with a lung infection and after surgery to remove gallstones.

Mandela stepped down as president in 1999 and has not been politically active for a decade. But he is still revered at home and abroad for leading the long campaign against apartheid and then championing racial reconciliation while in office.

Mandela has a history of lung problems dating from when he contracted tuberculosis as a political prisoner. He spent 27 years on Robben Island and in other jails for his attempts to overthrow the white-minority government.

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