- Title: Bolivians mourn the passing of Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro
- Date: 28th November 2016
- Summary: STILL PHOTO OF FIDEL CASTRO
- Embargoed: 13th December 2016 17:36
- Keywords: Fidel Castro death embassy Evo Morales
- Location: LAJA, LA PAZ AND SANTA CRUZ, BOLIVIA
- City: LAJA, LA PAZ AND SANTA CRUZ, BOLIVIA
- Country: Bolivia
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0025ACZR5Z
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: Bolivians paid their final respects on Monday (November 28) to Fidel Castro, who led a leftist revolution, ruled for half a century and resisted the United States throughout the Cold War.
A book of condolences was made available at the Cuban embassy in capital La Paz.
Castro died on Friday at the age of 90, a decade after stepping down due to poor health and ceding power to his brother Raul Castro. While he had been retired as an active leader, his death removed any impediment on his brother to pursue deeper relations with Washington if U.S. President-elect Donald Trump warms to the idea of improved ties.
Castro was admired by leftists and people of the developing world who saw him as a revolutionary champion of the poor, but vilified by those who viewed him as a dictator who oppressed Cubans and ruined the economy through socialism.
"Our commander has left physically but spiritually, he will always be in our hearts, the struggle will continue, the values of humanity and solidarity we will always have and Cubans are our family," said resident Silvana Balderrama.
Meanwhile a commemoration was held in Santa Cruz, where people gathered at the Jose Marti square, national hero of Cuba, holding flags and photographs of Castro and chanting: "Fidel! Fidel!"
"The departure of Fidel Castro, for us does mean we have to say goodbye but we should materialise his legacy, materialise his ideas," said an unidentified resident.
Castro was cremated on Saturday and the government has declared a nine-day period of mourning. His ashes will be carried in a cortege to a final resting place in Santiago de Cuba, the city in eastern Cuba where he launched the revolution.
While some world leaders have echoed admiration, critics have condemned him, including President-elect Donald Trump, who in a weekend statement on Castro's death called him "a brutal dictator who oppressed his own people."
Bolivian President Evo Morales, said comments like those represented imperialism and capitalism.
"The president-elect of the United States, with a group of people perform parties. I can't understand that. I want to tell you brothers and sisters, fascism with a lot of cynicism celebrates the death of Fidel, that is the culture of imperialism and capitalism," Morales said while addressing community members of Laja Cantata.
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