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Mandela's body lies in state for second day

By The Associated Press

This article was published December 12, 2013 at 7:22 a.m.

PRETORIA, South Africa — For a second day, droves of mourners filed past the body of Nelson Mandela on Thursday as it lay in state in South Africa's capital, Pretoria.

Mandela's casket was in the amphitheater at the Union Buildings, the seat of government where Mandela was inaugurated as the country's first black and democratically elected president in 1994.

Some mourners sobbed after passing the casket and had to be helped by security officials. Others accepted the grief of losing their revered leader.

"Now that I've seen his face, I think I'm OK now," Freda Mamemena said. "I see that the old man has rested at long last. He's at peace."

Thousands of people lined up at staging areas to catch buses to the viewing site, but many were not able to see the casket. On Thursday afternoon, the government announced that park-and-ride centers had been closed for the day after reaching full capacity. It said between 12,000 and 14,000 paid their final respects on Wednesday, the first day of viewing.

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