Wed | Oct 17, 2018

Holness, Simpson Miller among dignitaries at rally honouring Castro in Havana

Published:Wednesday | November 30, 2016 | 9:54 AM
Venezuela's President, right, speaks during a rally honoring Fidel Castro at the Revolution Plaza in Havana, Cuba.
Former Qatar's Emir Hamad bin Jalifa Al Thani, right, greets Cuba's President Raul Castro, center, after speaking during a rally honoring Fidel Castro at the Revolution Plaza in Havana.
Placed in a small coffin covered by a Cuban flag, the ashes of Cuban leader Fidel Castro are driven along the streets of Havana, Cuba, Wednesday.

Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness and Opposition Leader Portia Simpson Miller were among tens of thousands of people who filled Revolution Square in the Cuban capital, Havana, for a rally honouring Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro.

Proceedings began with the singing of Cuba's national anthem followed by visiting dignitaries.

Castro, who came to power in 1959 and ushered in a Communist revolution, died on Friday, at aged 90.

Left-wing Latin American leaders attended the event but other countries sent lower-ranking emissaries.

In his speech, South African President Jacob Zuma said Castro’s death was a painful loss for South Africa:


He also praised Cuba's record on health care and education:


South African President Jacob Zuma

Today, Castro's ashes will be taken on a journey to the south-eastern city of Santiago.

The route will recreate the victory tour taken by Castro after he won power in 1959, but in reverse.

His ashes will be placed on Sunday in the Ifigenia Cemetery in Santiago, where Cuban independence hero Jose Marti is buried.