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Contact: Justin Harmon (609) 258-3601

January 27, 2000

Statement by President Harold T. Shapiro

I am very sorry to have to report that Nelson Mandela has had to cancel the trip to the United States that would have brought him to Princeton University on February 25 to receive an honorary degree. Because of his continuing international obligations, Mr. Mandela will have to travel to the Middle East and West Africa at that time.

We are, of course, exceedingly disappointed. But the reason Princeton wanted to honor him in the first place was to recognize the special contributions to humanity that now prevent him from being here. We wish him every success as he continues to provide leadership and mediation in his unparalleled and unceasing commitment to peace, justice and equality, in South Africa and throughout the world.

I want to express my deep appreciation to Professor Jeffrey Herbst and the committee that worked with him to prepare a variety of events in connection with the anticipated visit, many of which I expect will still go forward, and to Associate Secretary Ann Halliday, who oversaw the preparations for the visit. Any questions about related events or activities may be directed to Ann.