Friday, February 27, 2009

Chavez says Fidel Castro walks in Havana streets

International Herald Tribune

Reuters

Published: February 27, 2009

By Frank Jack Daniel

Cuba's ailing former leader Fidel Castro, not seen in public for almost three years, walked the streets of Havana in a "miracle" that made people cry, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez said on Friday.

Chavez, a close friend of the legendary revolutionary, spent several hours with Castro in Cuba last weekend and said he was in his best health since falling ill in July 2006.

Other regional leaders have also described Castro as looking well in recent weeks.

Chavez's account of the walk and a trip to visit farmland may indicate an improvement in Castro's health.

"Fidel went out and they saw him, Fidel walking in the streets in Havana, a miracle, the people cried," Chavez said during a service to commemorate a massacre in Venezuela.

"Of course he planned it so there would be no record of it. But there are some photos I have seen. I consider myself privileged," Chavez said. Chavez did not say when the walk took place.

Government officials on the Caribbean island told Reuters they could not confirm that Castro had gone on the walk.

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