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World mourns anti-apartheid icon Tutu, ‘warrior for justice’



The Nobel Peace laureate passed away on Sunday at the age of 90, stripping the world of a towering moral figure and the last great protagonist of a heroic South African era.Dozens of people braved rain to gather outside the cathedral on Monday, leaving flowers and messages.Tutu "is the last of an extraordinarily outstanding generation of leaders that Africa birthed and gifted to the world", she said in a statement."He stood resolute and fearless, leading demonstrations cloaked in his flowing clerical robe with his cross as his shield — the embodiment of humankind's moral conscience."A memorial service will be held in the capital Pretoria on Wednesday. Family and friends will gather on Thursday evening around Tutu's widow, "Mama Leah". Around 400 people have already expressed their intention to attend the event.Music at the ceremony will also have to be moderated because of Covid curbs, officials said.- A 'shield' -Ordained at the age of 30 and appointed archbishop in 1986, he used his position to advocate tirelessly for international sanctions against apartheid. He retired in 1996 to lead a harrowing journey into South Africa's past as head of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which exposed the horrors of apartheid in terrible detail.Panyaza Lesufi, a senior member of the African National Congress (ANC) which swept aside apartheid and remains in power, said Tutu had acted as a "shield" during protests.However Tutu's fight against injustice continued long after racial segregation was consigned to the history books.- 'A truly meaningful life' -Barack Obama,  the United States' first black president, hailed Tutu as a "moral compass".Ramaphosa was expected to arrive in Cape Town on Monday, the presidency said.Church leaders in Cape Town said the Dalai Lama was expected to speak at Tutu's service, possibly by video link."When you were in parts of the world where there was little Anglican presence and people weren't sure what the Anglican Church was, it was enough to say 'It's the Church that Desmond Tutu belongs to'," Welby said in a statement.He had been in a weakened state for several months and died peacefully at 7 am (0500 GMT) on Sunday, according to several of his relatives interviewed by AFP.burs-ger/dl/gd…

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