In Washington, American leaders have unveiled a statue of Rosa Parks, a woman who defied racial segregation in 1955 making her a pioneer of civil rights.
She had refused to give up her seat in the coloured section of a bus for a white passenger. President Obama said her disobedience launched a movement.
“It is because of these men and women that I stand here today. It is because of them that our children grow up in a land more free and more fair,” he said.
Rosa Parks’ simple gesture in the segregated town of Montgomery in Alabama was seen as a crucial step in bringing civil rights to minority groups in the US.
Now her statue is among 100 figures of America’s great and good in the Capitol building.