Monday, August 14, 2006
In Cuba, celebrations for Fidel Castros 80 th birthday were specially marked with photos circulated by the countrys press revealing the revolutionary leader recovering from his recent operation. Athough Castro had warned Cubans to be ready for "bad newsbefore his operation, the pictures showed the President to be in good health. With a message reading "I feel very happy", pictures in the Juventud Rebelde newspaper showed the revolutionary leader alert and in good spirits and according to the Granma newspaper, the recovering Commander in Chief was taking a few steps after therapy and conversing. These were the first set of photos to be released since Castro, the worlds longest-serving head of government, underwent emergency surgery on July 31 to stop gastrointestinal bleeding and ceded power to his 75 year old brother Raul Castro, the Chief of National Defense.