Cuban revolutionary icon, former President and leader of the Communist revolution Fidel Castro died late Friday in Havana, his brother, President Raul Castro, announced on national television.
“The commander in chief of the Cuban revolution died at 22:29 hours this evening,” the president announced. Fidel Castro was 90.
It provided no further details.
Fidel Castro ruled Cuba as a one-party state for almost half a century before handing over the powers to his brother Raul in 2008.
His supporters praised him as a man who had given Cuba back to the people. But his opponents accused him of brutally suppressing opposition.
In April, Fidel Castro gave a rare speech on the final day of the country’s Communist Party congress.
He acknowledged his advanced age but said Cuban communist concepts were still valid and the Cuban people “will be victorious”.
Media captionFidel Castro made a rare appearance at Cuba’s Communist Party congress
“I’ll soon be 90,” the former president said, adding that this was “something I’d never imagined”.
“Soon I’ll be like all the others, “to all our turn must come,” Fidel Castro said.
Fidel Castro’s key dates
1926: Born in the south-eastern Oriente Province of Cuba
1953: Imprisoned after leading an unsuccessful rising against Batista’s regime
1955: Released from prison under an amnesty deal
1956: With Che Guevara, begins a guerrilla war against the government
1959: Defeats Batista, sworn in as prime minister of Cuba
1960: Fights off CIA-sponsored Bay of Pigs invasion by Cuban exiles
1962: Sparks Cuban missile crisis by agreeing that USSR can deploy nuclear missiles in Cuba
1976: Elected president by Cuba’s National Assembly
1992: Reaches an agreement with the US over Cuban refugees
2008: Stands down as president of Cuba due to health issues