AP PHOTOS: Thousands gather to remember Mandela

The Associated Press
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A man holds the official programme ahead of the memorial service for former South African president Nelson Mandela at the FNB Stadium in the Johannesburg, South Africa township of Soweto, Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2013. (AP Photo/Peter Dejong)

They gathered by the tens of thousands in a Soweto soccer stadium, braving a cold rain to pay respects to Nelson Mandela: world leaders, family members and South Africans whose lives he helped change in his decades-long fight against apartheid. The list of dignitaries was long, ranging from President Barack Obama to Cuban President Raul Castro. And a handshake between those two men epitomized the spirit of reconciliation Mandela came to represent.

Here are some images from the service: