HAVANA – New photographs of a smiling, tracksuit-clad Fidel Castro greeting workers at a scientific think tank were posted on the blogs of two Cuban journalists and a media website Saturday, offering a rare glimpse of the reclusive revolutionary leader in a public forum.
Castro, 83, appears slightly stooped but otherwise healthy in the pictures, which were said to have been taken Wednesday during a visit to the National Center for Scientific Investigation in Havana.
One set of four photos appeared on the blogs of two official Cuban journalists and apparently were taken with a worker’s mobile phone. The former Cuban leader is seen raising his hand to wave in one picture and seemingly being led away in another.
More images from the same event were posted later in the day on Cubadebate, a state-run media website. In those pictures, Fidel is seen laughing and talking with the workers.
Castro had not been photographed in public since falling seriously ill in July 2006. The illness forced him to turn over power – first temporarily, then permanently – to his younger brother Raul, who is 79.