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Former South African President Nelson Mandela and Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday viewed the remains of the World Trade Center, a site whose landscape has changed substantially since the attacks of Sept. 11.
Mayor Rudolph Giuliani escorted Mandela, 83, in the afternoon. Mandela, who met with President George W. Bush Monday, the day of the plane crash in the Rockaways, had trouble walking.
"I hope that the culprits - both the masterminds as well as those who executed the action who are still alive - will be heavily punished," Mandela said. "But ... I hope that this world tragedy will not lead to the rise of anti-Arab or anti-Muslim feelings because it's not the Arabs, it's not the Muslims who committed this cowardly act."