|Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi (front) mourns with other representatives for former South African president Nelson Mandela in Cape Town, South Africa, Dec. 6, 2013. Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi on Friday offered condolences over the death of Mandela. (Xinhua/Li Qihua)
CAPE TOWN, Dec. 6 (Xinhua) -- Chinese State Councilor Yang Jiechi on Friday offered condolences over the death of former South African president Nelson Mandela.
"We feel grief over the passing of Mr. Mandela," Yang said when addressing the fourth meeting of BRICS senior representatives on security issues, being held here from Thursday to Monday.
Representatives from the BRICS countries - Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa - observed a moment of silence before the meeting Friday.
Mandela, a world-renowned statesman, had led the South Africans through arduous struggles to victory over apartheid, making a historic contribution to the establishment and development of the new South Africa, Yang said.
Mandela was one of the founders of China-South Africa relations, and an active champion of bilateral friendship and cooperation, Yang said.
The Chinese people will always remember Mandela's extraordinary contributions to the development of China-South Africa ties and the cause of human progress, he said.
"We believe the South African people will turn sorrow into strength and make new achievements in nation-building, guided by the spirit of Mr. Mandela," Yang said.
Mandela died Thursday at the age of 95 following a prolonged battle with a lung infection.
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