Castro suffered stroke, says Venezuelan doctor


Former Cuban President Fidel Castro delivers a speech during the commemoration of the 50th Anniversary of the Committees of Defense of the Revolution (CDR) on Sept. 28, 2010 in Havana.


Adalberto Roque

It's not the first time Cuba's Fidel Castro is reported to have suffered a stroke, but on Friday renewed reports of Castro's ill health resurfaced.

The Miami Herald said it spoke to José Marquina, "a respected doctor who in the past has claimed to have direct information about the illness affecting President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela." The doctor said Castro was incapacitated.

In Naples, the doctor told the Herald in a phone interview:

"He suffered an embolic stroke and recognizes absolutely no one."

“The people with a condition of this nature have difficulty eating and, of course, they end up with total deficit in their neurologic capacities.”

“He could last weeks like that, but what I can say is that we’ll never again see him in public,” said Marquina in a telephone interview from Naples.

Dr. Marquina then said Castro’s condition was “very close to a neurovegetative state.”

This October marked the 50th anniversary of the Cuban Missile Crisis.

The former leader of Cuba (now his slightly younger brother Raul is in charge) was last seen in public in March, when Pope Benedict XVI visited Cuba. Seen here: