TEHRAN, Dec. 7 (MNA) – Guardian has reported that Mandela’s funeral ceremony will probably bring together Obama and Iran’s president Rouhani.
As South Africa embarked on nine days of mourning, comparisons were being drawn with earlier mammoth funeral ceremonies, of Pope John Paul II, Princess Diana, President John F Kennedy and Winston Churchill. But Mandela’s appeal was even broader, cutting across religious divides and the usual geopolitical barriers between north and south, east and west.
They are likely to mix in the funeral cortege with leaders from across the globe, including from China, Iran, Cuba, Israel and the Palestinian territories.
As well as creating a minefield of chance encounters to avoid, the convergence of such an array of presidents and prime ministers should also offer unusual diplomatic opportunities. The spirit of reconciliation Mandela embodied could provide, for example, the backdrop for a first meeting between Obama and Iranian leader, Hassan Rouhani.
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