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Caribbean leaders laud Castro at death

In this April 19, 2016 file photo, Fidel Castro attends the last day of the 7th Cuban Communist Party Congress in Havana, Cuba. Fidel Castro formally stepped down in 2008 after suffering gastrointestinal ailments and public appearances have been increasingly unusual in recent years. Cuban President Raul Castro has announced the death of his brother Fidel Castro at age 90 on Cuban state media on Friday, Nov. 25, 2016.
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Caribbean Community (CARICOM) leaders, whose countries have been beneficiaries of Cuba’s largesse, particularly in medicine and scholarships, on Saturday lauded the life of former President Fidel Castro, who died late Friday. He was 90.

“The real Revolutionary. Indelibly etched in history,” said Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness in a message on his Facebook page. “I pay my respects to the life and work of Fidel Castro and express the profound condolences and sympathies of the Jamaican people to the people of Cuba.

Later, the Jamaican leader said in a statement that “The government and people of Jamaica join me in extending to you [President Raul Castro], the entire Castro family and the government and people of Cuba our deepest condolences on this occasion.”

Holness said Fidel Castro “will go down in the annals of history as one of the leaders who, though coming from a Caribbean island developing state, has had the greatest impact on world history.”

Guyana’s President David Granger said his country was “deeply saddened by the passing of President Castro,” according to the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).

“His life was of significance not only to Guyana and the friendship that he had with Guyanese leaders but also to the entire Western Hemisphere and to the world,” CMC quoted Granger as saying.

“He certainly transformed politics in the Western Hemisphere and we would like to express our solidarity with the Cuban people in that regard,” he added.

Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister Dr. Keith Rowley said Castro’s passing represents “an end of an iconic period of history not only for the Caribbean and Latin. “

“The people of Trinidad and Tobago, and, indeed, many of our CARICOM nations, have long enjoyed cordial diplomatic relations with Cuba,” Rowley noted.

Dominica’s Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit said Castro “was somebody who had a very long and positive impact on the entire world, having served for several decades.

“But it is not only about his longstanding leadership of Cuba that is of note, but his generosity to the world and the impact which Cuba made on freedoms of many countries,” he said.

Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne said “scores of young Antiguans and Barbudans became doctors, civil engineers, architects, computer science engineers, and other professionals because of the generosity of the Cuban people and the Cuban leader.

“The world has lost a great man, the Caribbean has lost a fertile mind and a very worthy leader who was deeply loved by his own people,” Browne said.

“After two decades of superb guidance, both Cuba and Antigua and Barbuda have a mature and warm relationsh­ip,” he added.

Updated 3:05 am, July 10, 2018
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