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Ahmadinejad meets Fidel Castro

Last Updated: Friday, January 13, 2012 - 15:25

Havana: Two of Washington`s top irritants,
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad and Fidel Castro, held a two-hour meeting
to discuss world events, with the Iranian leader today
describing the retired Cuban revolutionary as healthy and
engaged, and declaring their two countries to be allies
"fighting on the same front".

"It made me enormously happy to see the comandante healthy
and fit," Ahmadinejad said through a translator at an
impromptu airport appearance alongside Fidel`s brother, Cuban
President Raul Castro, before flying off to Ecuador.

Raul said his 85-year-old brother and Ahmadinejad spoke
for two hours yesterday, "a demonstration that his brain is
working very well." Fidel Castro stepped down in 2006 due to
an illness that nearly killed him, but continues to write
essays on world events.

One of the main themes has been warning that a conflict
pitting the US and Israel against Iran could lead the world
toward nuclear Armageddon. Iranian officials last year said
they welcomed Castro`s support, but did not share his
apocalyptic concerns, arguing the West would not dare attack.

Raul Castro and the Iranian president also held a
late-night meeting yesterday, discussing bilateral relations
and world events.

"We have common positions on many things," Ahmadinejad
said. "We have been, are and will be together one with the

Ahmadinejad took no questions about tensions between his
country and Washington over Iran`s nuclear programme, and did
not comment on the assassination yesterday of a nuclear
scientist working at Iran`s main uranium enrichment facility.
Iran`s government blamed the killing on Israel, the US
and Britain. The US denied involvement.

Ahmadinejad began his Latin America tour shortly after
Washington imposed tougher sanctions on Tehran over the
nuclear programme. He spent less than 24 hours in Cuba,
following visits to Venezuela and Nicaragua.

Bureau Report

First Published: Friday, January 13, 2012 - 15:25

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