HAVANA TIMES — Former Cuban president Fidel Castro said Hugo Chavez’s health “is much better” and that he checks up on the Venezuelan president “every day,” reported DPA news.
“He’s much better, recovering. It has been a strenuous fight, but he has been improving,” Castro said Sunday when he appeared in public for the first time in months to vote in Cuba’s parliamentary elections.
“We have to cure him. Chavez is very important for his country and for Latin America,” added the 86-year-old veteran Cuban leader.
Chavez has been convalescing in Havana for nearly two months following his fourth operation for cancer in his “pelvic region.” After remaining in a very delicate state, he has been recovering in recent weeks, according to reports issued by the Venezuelan government.
On Sunday, Fidel Castro went to vote in the elections to elect 612 deputies of the island’s National Assembly. The Cuban leader appeared in public in the Havana neighborhood of Vedado at the same polling station where he has voted since 1976.
The former president had not been seen live on Cuban television since March 2012, when he met with Pope Benedict XVI during the pontiff’s visit to the island. In October the Cuban media broadcast current photos of him after several weeks of persistent rumors concerning his health.
Castro spoke with the Cuban media for over an hour at the polling station, reported the official Granma newspaper. The Cuban leader commented on current issues such as the elections on the island and the founding of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), the largest regional forum free of the Washington’s presence.
The creation of the bloc “has been a very important step in unity, of which Hugo Chavez has been one of the greatest architects,” said Castro.
After spending several weeks in a “delicate” state due to “complex” postoperative conditions, Chavez’s health is now better, according to the Venezuelan government.
After visiting Chavez in Havana over the weekend, the president of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Diosdado Cabello, said the president’s recovery is “progressing.”
“I’m bringing good news. We were there with Commander Chavez and I want to inform people that the president is continuing to progress slowly but steadily in his recovery,” said Cabello on Sunday upon his return to Caracas.
The absence of Chavez from Venezuela has resulted in political uncertainty in recent weeks. Vice President Nicolas Maduro, who is in charge of the interim government, and senior members of the president’s political circle have visited Chavez in Cuba on several occasions.