It seems that retired Cuban leader Fidel Castro has thrown his weight behind attempts to secure new diplomatic relations between the U.S. and Cuba. Reuters reports today that Castro appeared to lend his support to talks with the United States in his first comments about his longtime adversary since both countries agreed to restore diplomatic ties last month.
Fidel Castro, ever a fierce opponent of U.S. administrations spoke out yesterday in a letter to a student federation read at the University of Havana. It also appeared in Communist party newspaper Granma.
Whilst the letter wasn’t exactly a ringing endorsement, Fidel Castro did say, “any peaceful or negotiated solution to the problems between the United States and the peoples or any people of Latin America that doesn’t imply force or the use of force should be treated in accordance with international norms and principles, we will always defend cooperation and friendship with all the peoples of the world, among them our political adversaries.”
The Guardian points out that Castro did temper his remarks by saying “I don’t trust the policy of the United States, nor have I exchanged a word with them, but this does not mean I reject a pacific solution to the conflicts.”
The Huffington Post tells us that Fidel Castro took power after leading a revolution in Cuba in 1959 and spent almost 50 years resisting U.S. backed attempts to overthrow him. The 88-year-old Castro retired in 2008 as a result of ill-health handing power to his brother Raul Castro. Since then there have been numerous rumors that Castro had died.
The Miami Herald reports that Fidel Castro has largely withdrawn from public life but he does still release signed essays, known as “reflections” from time to time.
His silence on the new attempts to restore relations between the two nations left many wondering as to the state of Castro’s health and what his views were on the matter. His statement that “the president of Cuba has taken the pertinent steps in accordance with his prerogatives and the powers given to him by the National Assembly the Communist Party of Cuba,” seem to make it clear that he is supportive of finding a way through the 56 year impasse.
In his reflections Fidel Castro also commented on the way the world has changed during his lifetime. He mentioned that when he attended University in Havana it was the only University in the Country but that “Today we have more than 50 centers of higher education spread across the country.”
Castro closed his message by saying that “the serious dangers that threaten humanity today should give way to rules that are compatible with human dignity. No country is excluded from such rights. With this spirit I have fought and will continue fighting until my last breath.”
It is likely that Fidel Casto’s comments will prove a green light to those working to repair relations between to old adversaries.
What do Inquisitr readers think? Will Fidel Castro’s comments help to overcome any remaining blocks in the negotiations? Do you welcome his comments?
[image – CNN]