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Nelson Mandela (1918 – 1981) was a South African anti-apartheid activist. In 1961, he formed a militant group named uMkhonto we Sizwe and attempted to sabotage the South African government. He was arrested and imprisoned in 1962, and was sentenced to life imprisonment for conspiring to overthrow the state. He died on Robben Island in 1981. In 1990, the then-president of South Africa, F. W. de Klerk held a public funeral for Mandela.