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Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro dies at 90

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Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro has died at the age of 90 in Havana. His brother, President Raul Castro, announced the news on national television. CCTV correspondent Michael Voss tells us more about the Cuban revolutionary icon.

File photo taken on Aug. 7, 2010 shows Fidel Castro in Havana, Cuba. Fidel Castro died at 90, according to Cuban media. [Xinhua]

When Pope Benedict 16th visited Cuba in 2012, an ailing Fidel Castro came with his family to pay their respects. For most Cubans this was the first time they had ever seen pictures of Fidel with his wife Dalia and three of their five sons.

Despite his enormous public presence, Fidel Castro maintained a very private personal life.

Only two of their children are known to the public.. Antonio Castro is a sports doctor and a vice president of the World Baseball Federation while Alex Castro is his father's photographer.

None of Fidel Castro's children has gone into politics and there is no-one waiting in the wings to become the next Castro to lead Cuba.

There is one other prominent son from an earlier marriage. Fidelito is a scientist and by all accounts the only one who bears a strong resemblance to his father.

Fidel Castro met his first wife, Mirta Diaz-Balart, while both were university students in the 1940s. They divorced in 1955, while Fidel was in exile in Mexico planning the revolution.

This tall, dashing, charismatic man, with his rebellious air, had no shortage of female admirers and in those early years he had a string of affairs.

Ann Louise Bardach is an American author who during an interview with Fidel Castro asked him how many children he had.

"He said to me, 'casi un tribu', which means almost a tribe and roughly twelve kids, give or take," Ann said.

The one thing Fidel Castro never lost, even in old age, was his charismatic allure among the opposite sex.


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