12/05/2013 05:35 EST | Updated 01/25/2014 04:01 EST

Nelson Mandela Dead: Canadian Politicians Share Condolences (TWEETS)

Canadian politicians of all stripes are mourning the loss of a man described as a hero, a giant, and an inspiration.

Anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela, the first black president of South Africa, died Thursday at the age of 95.

In 1998, Mandela became the first foreigner to receive an honourary Companion of the Order of Canada.

He also became an honorary Canadian citizen in 2001.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper released a statement lauding Mandela as one of the world's great moral leaders and statesmen.

"Despite his long years of captivity, Mr. Mandela left prison with a heart closed to calls for a settling of scores. Instead, he was filled by a longing for truth and reconciliation, and for an understanding between all peoples," it reads.

"He demonstrated that the only path forward for the nation was to reject the appeal of bitterness. His forbearance was legendary: his magnanimity spared all South Africans incalculable suffering."

NDP Leader Tom Mulcair called Mandela "an extraordinary example of indomitable courage and faith."

"It is a rare individual whose reputation for wisdom transcends time. Nelson Mandela, who died today at the age of 95, is one of them. New Democrats join others around the world in mourning the loss of this exceptional man," he said in a statement.

Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau said Mandela was a leader who offered inspiration and hope to millions.

"The admiration and accolades Nelson Mandela is receiving from every corner of the world are a testament to his struggles and sacrifice," Trudeau said in a statement. "Truly a citizen of the world, Nelson Mandela's contribution to world freedom is simply unparalleled, and he will forever occupy a place in the hearts, minds and imaginations of people across the globe."

Many other politicians also shared condolences on Twitter and expressed what Mandela meant to them.

Politicians React To Death Of Nelson Mandela