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Cuba celebrates Fidel Castro's 88th birthday

By Xinhua in Havana | China Daily | Updated: 2014-08-14 07:09

Celebrations started in Cuba on Tuesday to mark the birthday of the nation's revolutionary leader Fidel Castro, who turned 88 on Wednesday.

An exhibition titled Fidel is Fidel features photographs taken by Roberto Chile, who has served as Castro's personal photographer for 25 years.

Taken between 2005 and 2012, the images depicting the "tireless" former leader will be on show until Sept 13, along with a Bronze sculpture of Castro inspired by one of his most emblematic photographic portraits.

 Cuba celebrates Fidel Castro's 88th birthday

A man rides his bicycle past graffiti hailing Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro on Tuesday in Havana. Castro celebrates his 88th birthday on Wednesday. AFP

Chile said the exhibition is taking place simultaneously in Havana's Revolution Plaza and the Art Stalker Gallery in Berlin, Germany.

"At both venues, they will project audiovisuals that recall watershed moments in Fidel's revolutionary undertakings through history, and his relationship with the people," he said.

On Wednesday, Cuba's Bayamo Wax Museum will unveil a wax figure of Colombian-born writer and 1982 Nobel Prize winner Gabriel Garcia Marquez, who was a close friend of Castro's.

Castro was born on Aug 13, 1926, in Biran, in what is now known as Holguin province, to the family of Spanish immigrant Angel Castro and Cuban farmer Lina Ruz.

Castro retired from power in 2006 after a life-threatening intestinal infection, but occasionally writes on world affairs for Cuban dailies and continues to receive foreign dignitaries, including most recently Russian President Vladimir Putin and President Xi Jinping, whom Castro called "one of the strongest and most capable revolutionary leaders I have ever met".

In conjunction with the two days of commemorations, Cuba celebrated the International Day of Youth on Tuesday, with cultural, recreational and sporting events throughout the island country's 168 cities.

Yuniasky Crespo, first secretary of Cuba's Union of Communist Youth, which organized the events, said each activity "will serve to honor the justice won, preserved and shared by the revolution, to ratify our sacred commitment to the fatherland, the future and our dreams".

On Dec 17, 1999, the UN General Assembly declared Aug 12 to be International Youth Day, which is an opportunity to draw attention to a given set of cultural and legal issues affecting youth worldwide.

(China Daily 08/14/2014 page10)

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