Gül sends farewell message to Castro
President Gül said the "special place" Castro won in the Turkish people's hearts during a 1996 visit to Turkey.
President Abdullah Gül has sent a farewell message to Cuba's revolutionary leader Fidel Castro after the latter said he was leaving the political stage after his rule of nearly half a century.
"I remember the great contributions you made to the people of Cuba and to the international political spectrum throughout the past half a century," Gül said in his statement sent to the ailing Cuban leader, according to a statement from the presidency. Gül said the "special place" Castro won in the Turkish people's hearts during a 1996 visit to Turkey will remain forever.
Castro, 81, stepped down on Tuesday, setting the stage for an orderly transfer of power to his brother Raul. The former Cuban leader, who seized power in an armed revolution in 1959, has not appeared in public since emergency intestinal surgery forced him to delegate power to his brother on July 31, 2006.
In 1996 Castro visited Turkey to attend the second UN Conference on Human Settlements (Habitat II). At that time, he praised Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Turkish Republic, saying the Turkish War of Independence Atatürk led after World War I was a source of inspiration for the Cuban revolutionaries.
Left-wing icon Castro will have no government duties, but stays on as first secretary of the Communist Party and will continue writing articles on domestic and world affairs, indicating that he will play the role of Cuban communism's ideologue and elder statesman.
Source: Zaman's Today
Güncelleme Tarihi: 23 Şubat 2008, 10:00