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News: International

Venezuelan Minister Jaua Meets with Castro, Dispels Stroke Rumours

Caracas, October 24th 2012 (Venezuelanalysis.com) – Former Venezuelan Vice-president, Elias Jaua, has dispelled rumour that Cuban revolutionary leader, Fidel Castro, had suffered a stroke after a Venezuelan doctor told international press that the former head of state was seriously ill.

 Rumours began circulating in the international press after medic José Marquina told Spanish news network, ABC, that the Cuban leader was near to a “neuro-vegetative state” following a stroke and could “recognise absolutely no-one”.

Maquina is most famously known for having falsely reported last year that Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez had just months to live after he was diagnosed with cancer. Despite this, many news outlets such as the Miami Herald and the New York Post reported the Venezuelan doctor’s comments as fact.

“We were conversing for quite a while on different topics, such as the Bolivarian revolution, the peoples’ victory on 7 October, agriculture, and some experimental harvests that he [Castro] is carrying out. This is a demonstration that he is perfectly fine,” said Jaua after making a “surprise” visit to Cuba on Saturday.

“He is a human being who thinks about humanity, about what the men and women of this planet are going to eat, both now and in the future...he is an extraordinary being, at the service of everyone....We’ll have Fidel for a while yet,” he added.

Pictures of 86 year old Fidel have since appeared on the Cuban news site, Cubadebate, showing the Cuban leader looking active and healthy in a garden. Fidel has also hit out at the “imperialist yellow press” for deceiving readers following the incident, but stated that people were becoming more distrustful of mainstream media reporting.

“Although many people in the world are deceived by the information bodies which publish these stupid things, almost all of which are in the hands of the rich and privileged, many people believe in them less and less... no one likes to be deceived,” the former president wrote.

 “I like to write and I write, I like to study and I study... I stopped publishing [my column] because it is certainly not my role to fill up the pages of our press, which is focussed on other areas required by the country,” he added.

Published on Oct 24th 2012 at 2.05pm