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South Africa begins World Cup party

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JOHANNESBURG (AFP) – South Africa brimmed with pride and anticipation on Thursday on the eve of the first World Cup on African soil as the nation’s icon Nelson Mandela said the tournament would bridge racial divides.

While the last of the 32 competing teams flew in, the Rainbow Nation was caught up in a wave of euphoria not seen since the demise of the whites-only apartheid regime and Mandela’s election 16 years ago.

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