Obama Visits Nelson Mandela's Former Jail In South Africa - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

Obama Visits Nelson Mandela's Former Jail In South Africa

NBCNEWS.COM - U.S. President Barack Obama and his family were visiting a former prison island off South Africa on Sunday in tribute to ailing anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela. The visit to Robben Island – the penal colony where Mandela spent 18 of his 27 years in jail – was taking place hours ahead of a speech at the University of Cape Town. Obama has already seen Mandela's cell once before, during a visit he made while still a U.S. senator in 2006.

The President and First Lady Michelle Obama made the short but spectacular flight to Robben Island from nearby Cape Town at 1:46 p.m. local time (7:46 a.m. ET). Obama met privately Saturday with relatives of Mandela, who has been in a serious condition in a hospital in Pretoria, near Johannesburg, for three weeks.

The White House announced earlier that Obama, "out of deference to Nelson Mandela's peace and comfort and the family's wishes," would not visit Mandela, who led South Africa out of racial segregation and became its first black president. Obama also spoke by telephone with Graça Machel, Mandela's wife, while she remained at the 94-year-old former statesman's beside.

"I also reaffirmed the profound impact that his legacy has had in building a free South Africa, and in inspiring people around the world -- including me," Obama said in a statement. "I expressed my hope that Madiba draws peace and comfort from the time that he is spending with loved ones, and also expressed my heartfelt support for the entire family as they work through this difficult time," Obama said, referring to Mandela by his honorary clan name.

Obama's Sunday speech echoes the "Day of Affirmation" address given at the same location in 1966 by Robert Kennedy, who compared struggle to overcome apartheid with the U.S. civil rights movement.

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Family tries euthanizing cat after he walked 12 miles to return home

    Family tries euthanizing cat after he walked 12 miles to return home

    Thursday, April 19 2018 1:23 AM EDT2018-04-19 05:23:12 GMT
    @a.cat.named.toby@a.cat.named.toby
    @a.cat.named.toby@a.cat.named.toby

    RALEIGH, North Carolina - A North Carolina family gave their cat away and then tried to euthanize him after he walked 12 miles back to his home. According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, North Carolina, Toby the cat made the long trek back to his family after they tried to give him away. When he returned, they took him to a shelter to put him down. The shelter called the SPCA to ask if they would help 

    >>

    RALEIGH, North Carolina - A North Carolina family gave their cat away and then tried to euthanize him after he walked 12 miles back to his home. According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, North Carolina, Toby the cat made the long trek back to his family after they tried to give him away. When he returned, they took him to a shelter to put him down. The shelter called the SPCA to ask if they would help 

    >>
  • Michigan mother leaves 2 infant girls in suitcase on curb

    Michigan mother leaves 2 infant girls in suitcase on curb

    Thursday, April 19 2018 11:16 AM EDT2018-04-19 15:16:15 GMT

    FLINT, Mich. - Police say a 26-year-old Michigan woman left her two infant daughters inside a suitcase on the side of the road as child welfare workers arrived to take the children away. Police say officers assisting Child Protective Services workers Wednesday were unable to find the children inside the Flint home, about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

    >>

    FLINT, Mich. - Police say a 26-year-old Michigan woman left her two infant daughters inside a suitcase on the side of the road as child welfare workers arrived to take the children away. Police say officers assisting Child Protective Services workers Wednesday were unable to find the children inside the Flint home, about 50 miles northwest of Detroit.

    >>
  • Toddler shoots pregnant mom outside Indiana thrift store

    Toddler shoots pregnant mom outside Indiana thrift store

    Wednesday, April 18 2018 4:40 PM EDT2018-04-18 20:40:25 GMT

    MERRILVILLE, Indiana - An Indiana woman is in critical but stable condition after her 3-year-old daughter accidentally shot her with a gun her father left in the car. Police in Merrillville say two small children were waiting in the car with their mother while their father shopped inside a thrift store when the shooting happened Tuesday afternoon.

    >>

    MERRILVILLE, Indiana - An Indiana woman is in critical but stable condition after her 3-year-old daughter accidentally shot her with a gun her father left in the car. Police in Merrillville say two small children were waiting in the car with their mother while their father shopped inside a thrift store when the shooting happened Tuesday afternoon.

    >>
HD DOPPLER 6i
/
  • National NewsMore>>

  • Family tries euthanizing cat after he walked 12 miles to return home

    Family tries euthanizing cat after he walked 12 miles to return home

    Thursday, April 19 2018 1:23 AM EDT2018-04-19 05:23:12 GMT
    @a.cat.named.toby@a.cat.named.toby
    @a.cat.named.toby@a.cat.named.toby

    RALEIGH, North Carolina - A North Carolina family gave their cat away and then tried to euthanize him after he walked 12 miles back to his home. According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, North Carolina, Toby the cat made the long trek back to his family after they tried to give him away. When he returned, they took him to a shelter to put him down. The shelter called the SPCA to ask if they would help 

    >>

    RALEIGH, North Carolina - A North Carolina family gave their cat away and then tried to euthanize him after he walked 12 miles back to his home. According to the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, North Carolina, Toby the cat made the long trek back to his family after they tried to give him away. When he returned, they took him to a shelter to put him down. The shelter called the SPCA to ask if they would help 

    >>
  • 'That's how she's wired': Southwest Airlines pilot lauded for handling crisis

    'That's how she's wired': Southwest Airlines pilot lauded for handling crisis

    Wednesday, April 18 2018 7:57 PM EDT2018-04-18 23:57:55 GMT
    Courtesy of Linda Maloney via NBC NewsCourtesy of Linda Maloney via NBC News
    Courtesy of Linda Maloney via NBC NewsCourtesy of Linda Maloney via NBC News

    BOERNE, Texas (AP) - The Southwest Airlines pilot being lauded as a hero in a harrowing emergency landing after a passenger was partially blown out of the jet's damaged fuselage is also being hailed for her pioneering role in a career where she has been one of the few women at the controls.    Tammie Jo Shults, one of the first female fighter pilots in the U.S. Navy, was the captain and piloting the Dallas-bound Flight 1380 when it made an 

    >>

    BOERNE, Texas (AP) - The Southwest Airlines pilot being lauded as a hero in a harrowing emergency landing after a passenger was partially blown out of the jet's damaged fuselage is also being hailed for her pioneering role in a career where she has been one of the few women at the controls.    Tammie Jo Shults, one of the first female fighter pilots in the U.S. Navy, was the captain and piloting the Dallas-bound Flight 1380 when it made an 

    >>
  • Houston 911 operator found guilty of hanging up on callers

    Houston 911 operator found guilty of hanging up on callers

    Wednesday, April 18 2018 7:48 PM EDT2018-04-18 23:48:11 GMT

    HOUSTON (AP) - Prosecutors say a former 911 operator in Houston has been found guilty of hanging up on people calling for emergency services and sentenced to 10 days in jail and 18 months of probation. The Harris County district attorney's office says jurors on Wednesday found 44-year-old Crenshanda Williams guilty of interference with emergency telephone calls, a misdemeanor. A judge sentenced her. Prosecutors say she worked as a 911 operator for a year and a half, ...

    >>

    HOUSTON (AP) - Prosecutors say a former 911 operator in Houston has been found guilty of hanging up on people calling for emergency services and sentenced to 10 days in jail and 18 months of probation. The Harris County district attorney's office says jurors on Wednesday found 44-year-old Crenshanda Williams guilty of interference with emergency telephone calls, a misdemeanor. A judge sentenced her. Prosecutors say she worked as a 911 operator for a year and a half, ...

    >>