- Title: Cuba awakes to life after Fidel Castro
- Date: 26th November 2016
- Summary: HAVANA, CUBA (NOVEMBER 26, 2016) (REUTERS) CUBAN FLAG IN THE MIDDLE OF THE AVENUE FLAG AT HALF MAST VARIOUS OF CUBAN CAPITOL AT DAWN CUBAN RESIDENT, YANDI GONZALEZ, (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) CUBAN RESIDENT, YANDI GONZALEZ, SAYING: "And so the historic leader of the revolution has just died. That's world-level news, and you've got to see now what happens. I think nothing will change. We've been waiting for this for many years." VARIOUS OF EXTERIOR PUBLIC HEALTH BUILDING WITH SIGN OF IMAGES OF FIDEL AND RAUL CASTRO CUBAN WORKER, IBRAHIM GARCIA, ON MALECON (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) CUBAN WORKER, IBRAHIM GARCIA, SAYING: "It's plenty painful for the Cuban people, a man like that will never exist again on the face of planet earth." MAN DOING EXERCISE ON MALECON EXTERIOR OF NATIONAL HOTEL
- Embargoed: 11th December 2016 13:18
- Keywords: Havana Fidel Castro funeral Malecon
- Location: HAVANA, CUBA
- City: HAVANA, CUBA
- Country: Cuba
- Topics: Government/Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA0015A2Z3UV
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text:Cubans awoke to the news Saturday (November 26) Fidel Castro, the Cuban revolutionary leader on the doorstep of the United States and for five decades defied U.S. efforts to topple him, has died on Friday. He was 90.
A towering figure of the second half of the 20th Century, Castro stuck to his ideology beyond the collapse of Soviet communism and remained widely respected in parts of the world that had struggled against colonial rule.
He had been in poor health since an intestinal ailment nearly killed him in 2006. He formally ceded power to his younger brother Raul Castro two years later.
Wearing a green military uniform, a somber Raul Castro, 85, appeared on state television on Friday night to announce his brother's death.
Tributes came in from allies, including Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Venezuela's socialist President Nicolas Maduro, who said "revolutionaries of the world must follow his legacy."
Although Raul Castro always glorified his older brother, he has changed Cuba since taking over by introducing market-style economic reforms and agreeing with the United States in December 2014 to re-establish diplomatic ties and end decades of hostility.
The morning after Castro's death, Cubans were remembering their historic leader.
"And so the historic leader of the revolution has just died. That's world-level news, and you've got to see now what happens. I think nothing will change. We've been waiting for this for many years," said Cuban resident Yandi Gonzalez.
"It's plenty painful for the Cuban people, a man like that will never exist again on the face of planet earth," said Cuban worker, Ibrahim Garcia.
Fidel Castro offered only lukewarm support for the deal, raising questions about whether he approved of ending hostilities with his long-time enemy. Some analysts believed his mere presence kept Raul from moving further and faster, while others saw him as either quietly supportive or increasingly irrelevant.
He did not meet Barack Obama when he visited Havana earlier this year, the first time a U.S. president had stepped foot on Cuban soil since 1928.
Days later, Castro wrote a scathing newspaper column condemning Obama's "honey-coated" words and reminding Cubans of the many U.S. efforts to overthrow and weaken the Communist government.
The news of Castro's death spread slowly among Friday night revelers on the streets of Havana. One famous club that was still open when word came in quickly closed.
Some residents reacted with sadness to the news.
But in Miami, where many exiles live, a large crowd waving Cuban flags cheered, danced and banged on pots and pans.
Castro's body will be cremated, according to his wishes. Cuba declared nine days of mourning, during which time the ashes will be taken to different parts of the country. A burial ceremony will be held on Dec. 4.
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