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On Feb. 12, 2006, Rodney McDonald of Mabou was elected leader of Nova Scotia’s Progressive Conservative Party in Halifax, replacing John Hamm. He served as premier until June 19, 2009.
On Feb. 12, 2003, Defence Minister John McCallum said Canada would send 3,000 troops to Afghanistan to provide stability and security in the capital Kabul.
On this date in 1990, Nelson Mandela, the world’s most famous political prisoner, was freed by the South African government at the age of 71. The leader of the African National Congress spent 27 years in jail for treason. Mandela and South African President F.W. de Klerk shared the 1993 Nobel Peace Prize for their work to scrap apartheid. Mandela succeeded de Klerk in 1994 and served as president until 1999.