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Observing a rite of passage in Swaziland

A young girl wearing traditional Swazi clothing looks on as some of the estimated 30,000 young women participating in the annual Umhlanga, or Reed Dance ceremony, arrive at the Swazi Royal Residence with their reeds to be presented to King Mswati III, in Mbabane, Swaziland on September 2, 2012.

Previously on PhotoBlog: Rebuilding of ghost town offers hope in Swaziland, a nation of orphans

On the main day of the eight-day event, the young women gather in their groups according to where they live and present the reeds to the Queen Mother and King Mswati III as a rite of passage.

Editor's note: Image made available to NBC News on September 11, 2012.