Obama meets privately with Mandela family

Associated Press
U.S. President Barack Obama gestures during a news conference with South African President Jacob Zuma, not pictured, at the Union Building on Saturday, June 29, 2013, in Pretoria, South Africa. The president is in South Africa, embarking on the second leg of his three-country African journey. The visit comes at a poignant time, with former South African president and anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela ailing in a Johannesburg hospital. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)
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U.S. President Barack Obama gestures during a news conference with South African President Jacob Zuma, not pictured, at the Union Building on Saturday, June 29, 2013, in Pretoria, South Africa. The president is in South Africa, embarking on the second leg of his three-country African journey. The visit comes at a poignant time, with former South African president and anti-apartheid hero Nelson Mandela ailing in a Johannesburg hospital. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — President Barack Obama met privately Saturday with the family of Nelson Mandela.

The meeting was held in Johannesburg at the Nelson Mandela Centre of Memory, part of the former South African president's foundation.

It lasted for about a half hour, enough time for a small crowd to gather outside for Obama's departure.

The White House says Obama met with two of Mandela's daughters and several grandchildren.

He will not meet with the ailing 94-year-old Mandela, who is hospitalized with a lung infection. The White House says the decision was made in accordance with the wishes of Mandela's family.

The White House initially said first lady Michelle Obama would attend, but later said she did not accompany the president. Mrs. Obama met Mandela during her trip to Africa in 2011.

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