Castro rumour mill continues to churn

2012-10-20 07:32
Fidel Castro (Picture: AP)

Fidel Castro (Picture: AP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Havana - The rumour mill surrounding the health of Fidel Castro churned anew on Friday despite a letter from the aging Cuban revolutionary published by state media and denials by relatives at home and in the United States that he is on death's door.

Social media sites and some news organisations have reported allegations by a Venezuelan doctor that Castro, 86, suffered a massive stroke, was in a vegetative state and had only weeks to live, though the same doctor, Jose Rafael Marquina, has made some claims before that have not panned out.

Marquina told the newspaper ABC in Spain that Castro had suffered a "massive embolism of the right cerebral artery" and while not on life support or breathing artificially, was "moribund" at a house in a gated former country club in western Havana.

Marquina also said Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez had travelled suddenly to Havana to be with his friend and ally, an account that could not be immediately verified.

Reached by The Associated Press, Marquina said his sources were in Venezuela, but he would not identify them or say how they were in a position to have information about Castro's health.

He also indicated he had received corroborating evidence from sources on Twitter, but would not say who.

In April, Marquina said that Chavez, who has been battling an undisclosed kind of cancer, was in his "last days" and would not last to November.

With less than two weeks to go, the Venezuelan leader says he's beaten the illness and appears stronger in public.

Castro's health is considered a matter of national security in Cuba and few details are released.

Rumours that the former Cuban leader has died or is near death have circulated repeatedly for years, but they gained force after he failed to issue a public statement congratulating Chavez on his 7 October election victory.

Castro has not been seen in public since March, when he received visiting Pope Benedict XVI. He has also stopped writing his once-constant opinion pieces, the last of which appeared in June.

There was no immediate comment from the Cuban government on the latest claims, but a letter attributed to Castro was published Thursday by Cuban state media. In it, he congratulated graduates of a medical school on the occasion of its 50th anniversary.

Two close family members of Castro have also recently denied he is in grave condition. Juanita Castro, the former leader's sister, told the AP in Miami that reports of her brother's condition are "pure rumors" and "absurd."

Son Alex Castro told a reporter for a weekly Cuban newspaper that his father "is well, going about his daily life".

- SAPA

Read more on:    fidel castro  |  hugo chavez  |  venezuela  |  cuba
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
4 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
 

Parties serve urgent application over Tlakula

Opposition parties have filed an urgent application in the Electoral Court over their demand that IEC chair Pansy Tlakula must resign, UDM leader Bantu Holomisa says.

 
 

Latest elections multimedia

Why Jack Parow wants you to vote on 7 May
The ad the SABC doesn't want to air
Elections 2014 in one cartoon
This year's election posters
 
Traffic
Lottery
 
  • Thursday Cape Town - 18:56 PM
    Road name: N1 Outbound
    ACCIDENT obstructing two lanes at the M5 Koeberg Interchange - DELAYS from Lower Church Street
  • Thursday Kalk Bay - 18:47 PM
    Road name: Main Road Southbound
    HEAVY DELAYS between Muizenberg and Kalk Bay
 
More traffic reports...
 

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Escape winter, head to Mauritius

Escape winter by spending 7 nights in Mauritius' tropical bliss from R13 215 per person sharing. Includes return flights, airport transfers and accommodation. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Get many eggs in one basket!

Gaming bundles: 2 Super Hits games for R99, 3 Disney games for R99 and more + exclusive accessory bundles only available on kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

25% off bestselling books!

The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Jeffrey Archer’s Be Careful What You Wish for, Man’s Search for Meaning by Victor E. Frank and many more titles. Shop now!

Up to 25% off electronics

Buy top electronics and save up to 25%. Such as kalahari.com’s 1# selling product the gobii eReader, Patriot X Porter flash drive, Asus Nexus 7” 3G tablet, Samsung Galaxy SIII, Lenovo G580 Notebook and many more. Shop now!

DStv HD PVR Decoder now R949

The DStv HD PVR Decoder has further revolutionised the television experience with lifelike viewing, sharper images, more vibrant colours and precision picture quality. Now R949, save R550. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 30% off appliances & homeware

Save up to 30% on appliances and homeware this Easter! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

BlackBerry Bold Touch 9900

The Blackberry Bold Touch 9900 is as the name says...

From R3565.00

I'm shopping for:

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be required to travel or get information for your job. This may be restricting in some way or something may slow things...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.