Former US President Barack Obama, centre, greets the Nelson Mandela's widow, Graca Machel, left, with President Cyril Ramaphosa at right, as he arrives at the Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, Tuesday, July 17, 2018 to deliver the 16th Annual Nelson Mandela Lecture. Obama urged Africans and people around the world to respect human rights and equal opportunity in his speech to mark the late Nelson Mandela's 100th birthday. (AP Photo/Themba Hadebe)

The Latest: Obama speech combats 'politics of fear'

July 17, 2018 - 9:24 am

JOHANNESBURG (AP) — The Latest on former U.S. President Barack Obama's speech in South Africa (all times local):

4:20 p.m.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama says politicians pushing "politics of fear, resentment, retrenchment" are on the move "at a pace unimaginable just a few years ago."

Obama is giving a speech in South Africa to mark the 100th anniversary of Nelson Mandela's birth and is making clear the world is at a crossroads between Mandela's vision of tolerance and current "disturbed" times.

Obama tells the crowd that "those in power seek to undermine every institution ... that gives democracy meaning."

He is attacking "strongman politics" and adds: "I am not being alarmist, I am simply stating the facts. Look around."

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3:55 p.m.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama in his first high-profile speech since leaving office is calling today's times "strange and uncertain."

Obama has opened his speech in South Africa by saying that "each day's news cycle is bringing more head-spinning and disturbing headlines."

He is speaking in South Africa to mark the 100th anniversary of Mandela's birth.

While not directly mentioning his successor, President Donald Trump, Obama is expected to counter many of Trump's policies, rallying people to keep alive the ideas that Mandela worked for including democracy, diversity and good education for all.

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3:40 p.m.

South Africa's president is introducing former U.S. President Barack Obama as the rare person who dreamed about being like Nelson Mandela and achieving that dream.

President Cyril Ramaphosa, however, also is poking fun at Obama, saying he cannot dance as well as Mandela could dance.

Obama, who is set to make his highest-profile speech since leaving office, has responded with a mock look of outrage and a smile.

Ramaphosa adds that in Obama, "We have found a kindred spirit. We have found a brother."

Obama is delivering a speech to mark the 100th anniversary of Mandela's birth.

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2:15 p.m.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama has been greeted with cheers in South Africa as he is set to make his highest-profile speech since leaving office.

Obama is expected to urge people around the world to respect human rights and other values under threat in an address marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela's birth.

While not directly mentioning his successor, President Donald Trump, Obama's speech is expected to be a rebuke to many of Trump's policies.

An estimated 14,000 people have gathered for the address which should start shortly.

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11:15 a.m.

Former U.S. President Barack Obama is set to make his highest-profile speech since leaving office, urging people around the world to respect human rights and other values under threat in an address marking the 100th anniversary of anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela's birth.

Obama's speech Tuesday in South Africa is expected to rally people to keep alive the ideas that Mandela worked for including democracy, diversity and good education for all.

While not directly mentioning his successor, President Donald Trump, Obama's speech is expected to be a rebuke to many of Trump's policies.

An estimated 14,000 people are gathering at a cricket stadium for the speech, which will be streamed online.

South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and Mandela's widow Graca Machel will introduce Obama for the annual Nelson Mandela Lecture.

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