Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Hugo & Fidel

Cuba TV Shows Castro Meeting With Chavez
Wednesday, January 31, 2007
By ANITA SNOW, Associated Press Writer / Fox News

HAVANA — Cuban state television Tuesday showed a video of a healthier looking Fidel Castro meeting with Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and saying his recovery was "far from a lost battle," in the first images of the ailing leader in three months.

Cubans watching the video being shown repeatedly on nightly television news as they sat in open cafes and restaurants said the images reassured them about Castro's health.

The broadcast came six months after Castro stunned the nation with a July 31 announcement that he had undergone intestinal surgery and was provisionally ceding power to his younger brother Raul.

The date that Tuesday's video was taken could not be immediately confirmed. In it, Chavez said the two-hour private meeting took place on Monday and ended at 3 p.m. on Jan 29. In Caracas, a presidential spokeswoman, speaking on customary condition of anonymity, confirmed that Chavez made a one-day visit to Havana on Monday.

In the latest video, Chavez said he found his friend to be "of good humor, with a good face and in good spirits." He said the pair discussed a variety of issues, including the world's energy crisis, and that Castro showed "much clarity, as always in his ideas and analysis."

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