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Wednesday, September 23, 1998 Published at 07:25 GMT 08:25 UK

World: Africa

Mandela supports Clinton

The South African president, Nelson Mandela, has publicly voiced strong support for President Clinton, at the same time as opinion polls suggest a majority of Americans oppose any move to impeach him.

Mr Mandela was speaking at a White House reception for black religious and educational leaders.

Morality, the South African leader said, "does not allow us to desert our friends".

He praised what Mr Clinton had done for blacks and minorities everywhere, and reminded the audience of the support expressed for the beleaguered president by world leaders at the United Nations on Monday.

Mr Mandela's remarks were greeted with a standing ovation.

Mr Clinton was reduced to tears.

From the newsroom of the BBC World Service

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