Fidel Castro’s ashes interred in private ceremony in Cuba
SANTIAGO | Fidel Castro’s ashes were interred in a private ceremony Sunday morning, ending nine days of mourning for the man who ruled Cuba for nearly half a century.
The military caravan bearing his remains in a flag-draped cedar coffin left the Plaza of the Revolution in the eastern city of Santiago at 6:39 a.m. Thousands of people lined the twomile route to Santa Ifigenia cemetery, waving Cuban flags and shouting “Long live Fidel!”
Photographs taken by Cuban state media showed that the interment was presided over by Castro’s younger brother and successor, President Raul Castro, who wore his green military uniform as he placed the older man’s ashes into what appeared to be a niche in his tomb, a simple, gray, round stone about 15 feet high.
Those in attendance included Castro’s widow, Dalia Soto del Valle, other members of his family and Presidents Nicolas Maduro of Venezuela and Daniel Ortega of Nicaragua, among others.
The gathering appeared to last about 90 minutes and took place entirely out of the public eye after Cuban officials made a last-minute cancellation of plans to broadcast the start of events live on national and international television. International media were barred from the event.