- Title: Castro funeral cortege departs Camaguey, thousands pay tribute
- Date: 2nd December 2016
- Summary: ONLOOKER HOLDING PHOTO OF YOUNG FIDEL CASTRO
- Embargoed: 17th December 2016 13:47
- Keywords: Fidel Castro Raul Castro funeral cortege mourners
- Location: CAMAGUEY, CUBA
- City: CAMAGUEY, CUBA
- Country: Cuba
- Reuters ID: LVA0025B6ZAYV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Cubans lined the streets of eastern city of Camaguey on Friday (December 2) morning to honor the funeral cortege transporting Fidel Castro's ashes to the far eastern city of Santiago de Cuba.
Thousands gathered along the route, waving Cuban flags and shouting in support of Castro.
"I feel it here. My chest hurts to see this small box of my love, my adored Fidel. Why did you leave, Fidel? Although you are old, we wanted you. Oh, my life," said Cuban, Marielena Iglesias.
"I am here to say good-bye to my father, to say good-bye to the father of all Cubans, to give him his final physical good-bye because he will always be with us in each bit of work, in each happy or sad moment. He will be with us. It is to say good-bye to the greatest who has ever been in this country," said another woman, Isabel Maria Escobar Fernandez.
Castro died on Friday (November 25) at age 90, a decade after stepping down as president but defiant to the end toward the United States, the world power he tormented from just 90 miles (145 km) away.
The government declared nine days of mourning for the man who built a Communist state, aligned Cuba with the Soviet Union and survived what his government claimed were more than 600 U.S. assassination attempts.
The cause of his death has not been made public, but Castro had been weak since an intestinal ailment believed to be diverticulitis forced him to relinquish power in 2006.
On Wednesday, his casket spent the night alongside the remains of Che Guevara in the city of Santa Clara.
The procession was slowly making its way east, destined for the final resting place of his ashes in Santiago de Cuba, where Castro's rebels first launched an attack on the U.S.-backed forces of Fulgencio Batista in 1953.
Batista was finally driven from Cuba on Jan. 1, 1959, and the cortege is retracing the trek Castro made from that day until he arrived in Havana a week later.
Castro would go on to build a healthcare system for the poor, he sent doctors around the world but also soldiers to Africa to help Namibia achieve independence and weaken apartheid in South Africa.
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