Castro speaks in public

CARACAS, Venezuela, February 28, 2007 – Fidel Castro is recovery well from intestinal surgery.

How is that known? Well, he said so – himself – live on Venezuelan radio yesterday in a programme hosted by his close friend President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela.

“Hello there, illustrious and dear friend, how are you?” Fidel Castro asked President Chavez at the start of an extended conversation broadcast on the Venezuelan leader’s Hello President show.

During the programme, Castro said he felt “good” that that he was happy. He also jokingly told Chavez that since his illness he had time to become a student again in his old age and promised to visit Venezuela though it would not be anytime soon.

He said that he was recovery well and appealed for patience.

“The country is marching along, which is what is important,” Castro said.

Last month a Spanish newspaper reported that the prognosis for a recovery was grave. Earlier the Americans reported that Castro had cancer. Both claims were denied by Chavez who maintains a nearly daily contract his Communist ally.