Raul Castro announced on Cuban state television that his brother and communist revolutionary, Fidel Castro, had died at the age of 90 on Friday. While Castro had appeared frail for a number of years, many are wondering how did Fidel Castro die?
Thus far, Raul has not elaborated on the details of his brother's passing. "At 10.29 in the night, the chief commander of the Cuban revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, died," Raul said on state media, according to Reuters. "Ever onward, to victory."
There were more than a few hints that Castro's health had been ailing. The Cuban dictator had provisionally handed over power to his brother, Raul, in July 2006 "after an acute infection in his colon forced him to undergo emergency surgery," as the New York Times reported. The Cuban government was highly secretive about Castro's health condition. As the Washington Post's Kevin Sullivan and J.Y. Smith wrote of the surgery, "the precise nature of Mr. Castro’s health problems was an official state secret)." Under two years later, Castro officially resigned in February 2008 an transferred power to Raul.
Although Cuba arguably loosened some of its anti-free market stances under Raul's authority, the state has largely remained as secretive about Fidel Castro's health. Specific details about the cause of Castro's death were not provided by Raul during his announcement.
In the past decade, Castro's public appearances had been noticeably sparse. In April 2016, Castro publicly acknowledged his advanced age: "Soon I will turn 90 years old, never would such a thing have occurred to me and it's not the outcome of any effort; it was fate's whim. Soon I will be like everyone else. To all of us comes our turn."