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Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro dies aged 90

Fidel Castro, Cuba’s former president and leader of the Communist revolution, has died aged 90, his brother has said.

Fidel Castro, Cuba's former president and leader of the Communist revolution, has died aged 90
Fidel Castro, Cuba’s former president and leader of the Communist revolution, has died aged 90

“The commander in chief of the Cuban revolution died at 22:29 hours this evening (03:29 GMT Saturday),” President Raul Castro said.

Fidel Castro ruled Cuba as a one-party state for almost 50 years before Raul took over in 2008.

His supporters said he had given Cuba back to the people. But he was also accused of suppressing opposition.

Ashen and grave, President Castro told the nation in an unexpected late night broadcast on state television that Fidel Castro had died and would be cremated later on Saturday.

There would now be several days of national mourning on the island.

Raul Castro ended the announcement by shouting the revolutionary slogan: “Towards victory, always!”

Fidel Castro, Cuba's leader of revolution, dies at 90
Fidel Castro, Cuba’s leader of revolution, dies at 90

Barring the occasional newspaper column, Fidel Castro had essentially been retired from political life for some time, the BBC’s Will Grant in Havana reports.

In April, Fidel Castro gave a rare speech on the final day of the country’s Communist Party congress.

He acknowledged his advanced age but said Cuban communist concepts were still valid and the Cuban people “will be victorious”.

“I’ll soon be 90,” the former president said, adding that this was “something I’d never imagined”.

“Soon I’ll be like all the others, “to all our turn must come,” Fidel Castro said.

Fidel Castro, Cuba's former president and leader of the Communist revolution, has died aged 90
Fidel Castro, Cuba’s former president and leader of the Communist revolution, has died aged 90

Castro – who had survived many assassination plots – was the longest serving non-royal leader of the 20th Century.

Castro temporarily handed over power to his brother in 2006 as he was recovering from an acute intestinal ailment.

Raul Castro officially became president two years later.

Fidel Castro’s key dates

  • 1926: Born in the south-eastern Oriente Province of Cuba
  • 1953: Imprisoned after leading an unsuccessful rising against Batista’s regime
  • 1955: Released from prison under an amnesty deal
  • 1956: With Che Guevara, begins a guerrilla war against the government
  • 1959: Defeats Batista, sworn in as prime minister of Cuba
  • 1961: Fights off CIA-sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion by Cuban exiles
  • 1962: Sparks Cuban missile crisis by agreeing that USSR can deploy nuclear missiles in Cuba
  • 1976: Elected president by Cuba’s National Assembly
  • 1992: Reaches an agreement with US over Cuban refugees
  • 2008: Stands down as president of Cuba due to health issues

Throughout the Cold War, Fidel Castro was Washington’s bete noire.

An accomplished tactician on the battlefield, he and his small army of guerrillas overthrew the military leader Fulgencio Batista in 1959 to widespread popular support.

Within two years of taking power, he declared the revolution to be Marxist-Leninist in nature and allied the island nation firmly to the Soviet Union.

Yet, despite the constant threat of a US invasion as well as the long-standing economic embargo on the island, Castro managed to maintain a communist revolution in a nation just 90 miles (145km) off the coast of Florida.

Despised by his critics as much as he was revered by his followers, he outlasted ten US presidents and defied scores of attempts on his life by the CIA. BBC News

  • He’s left remarkable history…..

    • VekuZvishavane Ne Tara

      What are you talking about you moron, What remarkable history are you referring to, That of murder, dictatorship and cruelty at its best sa Mugabe. Its either you are out of your mind or you do not know your history of world leaders (both dead and living). Fidel is a clone of Mugabe, selfish, murderer, dictator, tribalist, satanist, son of a bitch etc etc. Thus why those that fled his cruelty are celebrating here in Miami and elsewhere around the globe. We are also waiting for similar celebrations when the goblin dies

  • I thought he was older than that!

  • Tazvihwa kare

  • Dictator, killed many people

  • Close Encounters Of 3rd Kind

    Flight plans and overflight rights are being filed. The Gushungo private jet is being refuelled. Unfortunately Castro is being cremated today and the tinpot will miss the Guy Folkes day.

  • Rest in peace chibababa true dictator. A vagourbound

  • Rip
    Ma 90z aya akuyenda manje

  • Regai zvifee

  • mugabe should follow soon

    • Why ..

    • righteousness exalts a nation but sin is a reproach to many …… if u knew the man well enough you wouldnt be asking tht questin

  • Zvavo vanofirwa nema #despot

  • Good riddance #NoToDespots

  • Wish he could rise and die aftr every 3 mnths fr 10years…the ruthless mobile idiot!

  • Batsi

    MUGABE TO ATTEND FIDEL CASTRO”S FUNERAL- A DELEGATION OF 210 ZANU PF THIEVES WILL ACCOMPANY THE OLD MAN. (WHAT A BUTCH OF LOSERS). EACH ZANU PF WILL RECEIVE A $10,000 SHOPPING ALLOWANCE WITH THE OLD BAG GETTING $10 million. ZIMBABWEANS WILL GET BOND NOTES. COMRADES ZIMBABWEANS WHO DON”T BOND NOTES CAN GO A HANG.

  • I just came here to see how many people think Gushungo should follow next

  • I just came here to see how many people think Gushungo should follow next

  • Someone take him to hell please.

  • ZimMatata

    What sin did we commit. Fidel stepped down at 82 due to poor health and died at 90. Robert Mugabe is going for another term at age 94 despite poor health and won’t die. God left Zimbabwe long back.

  • Zvinonzi nedzoi kanakwafiwa Kwete kushuvirarazve kufa kwemumwe on top