Nelson Mandela

South African President Says Mandela's Release a Sign of Progress

Rejects dire reports that he's gone home to spend final days

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South Africa's President Jacob Zuma today said that Nelson Mandela's release from the hospital to go home indicates "progress" – a remark in contrast with gloomy pronouncements by some local media, that the elderly icon of freedom was going home "to see out his final days."

Mr. Zuma told journalists in the capital Pretoria that after three months in intensive care, the release allowing the revered former president to live in the upmarket Johannesburg suburb of Houghton showed he was getting better.

"I think we feel very good that he could leave hospital which indicates the progress he has made," Zuma said. "He is old and not well but we are very happy that he's gone home, that he's still with us."

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