News24

Castro blasts Cheney

2009-05-28 09:34

Havana -  Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro on Wednesday criticised former US vice president Dick Cheney for defending harsh interrogation techniques used against terror suspects.

"The former vice president has prepared his comments carefully," but "they defend torture as a method to obtain information in certain circumstances", Castro, 82, wrote on the government website Cubadebate.

Castro's comments came in response to Cheney's speech last week during which he defended the anti-terror policies backed by the administration of former president George W Bush.

Cheney told the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, that the use of enhanced interrogation tactics - denounced as torture by new US President Barack Obama - had helped save lives in the wake of the September 11, 2001 attacks.

The one-time defence secretary's "attacks on the Obama administration were really tough, but I do not want to give an opinion on this subject. Terrorism did not fall from the sky: the method was devised by United States to fight the Cuban Revolution in 1959", Castro said.

The United States sought to overthrow Castro several times during his early years in power, including during the 1961 invasion of the Caribbean island nation's Bay of Pigs by US-trained Cuban exiles.

The attacks, Castro said, "were not only against the people and the economy, but also to eliminate the leaders of the revolution".

AFP