Cuban leader Fidel Castro says he is in a stable condition and good spirits after surgery which forced him to temporarily hand over power. His younger brother Raul took up the reins as the 79-year-old underwent an operation on his stomach. A statement from Castro was read out on television.
“I would not make up good news because it would not be ethical and if the news was bad, the only one who would benefit would be the enemy. In Cuba’s specific situation because of the plans of the empire, my health becomes a state secret which cannot be divulged carelessly and our compatriots should understand this. I cannot fall in the vicious circle of fulfilling health parameters which change constantly. I can say that I am in a stable medical condition but recovery takes time,” it said.
In Havana, Castro sympathisers showed their support in a rally at the city’s National Park and expressed optimism that he would recover quickly. Elsewhere Communist party leaders warned that attempts to take advantage of Castro’s illness would be dealt with swiftly.