Castro Gives First TV Interview Since Illness Fidel Castro appeared on Cuban TV, giving his first lengthy interview since falling ill nearly a year ago. He talked about past memories and the benefits of a balanced diet. The 80-year-old leader's condition and exact ailment have remained state secrets since July 31, when he announced he had undergone emergency intestinal surgery and was stepping aside in favor of a provisional government headed by his 76-year-old brother Raul, the defense minister.
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Castro Gives First TV Interview Since Illness

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Castro Gives First TV Interview Since Illness

Castro Gives First TV Interview Since Illness

Castro Gives First TV Interview Since Illness

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Fidel Castro appeared on Cuban TV, giving his first lengthy interview since falling ill nearly a year ago. He talked about past memories and the benefits of a balanced diet. The 80-year-old leader's condition and exact ailment have remained state secrets since July 31, when he announced he had undergone emergency intestinal surgery and was stepping aside in favor of a provisional government headed by his 76-year-old brother Raul, the defense minister.

RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Fidel Castro appeared on Cuban TV yesterday - his first interview since falling ill 10 months ago.

(Soundbite of TV Interview)

President FIDEL CASTRO (Cuba): (Spanish spoken)

MONTAGNE: Castro wore a tracksuit embellished with the Cuban flag, and he spoke of his improved health, crediting a more balanced diet.

Photos from just a few months ago showed the 80-year old Cuban leader looking frail and weak. He's recovering from intestinal surgery and an undisclosed illness that's treated as a state secret. During the nearly hour-long interview, Fidel Castro reminisced about a long ago trip to Vietnam, and then in true Castro fashion, read a list of random statistics on Vietnam's social services. What he didn't mention was when or if he'll take back the presidency.

(Soundbite of music)

MONTAGNE: You're listening to MORNING EDITION from NPR News.

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