Fidel Castro calls for calm on the Korean peninsula
Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro said a war between North and South Korea would not benefit either country and urged for calm as tensions soared in the region.
In an article for Granma, the communist party's newspaper, the 86-year-old wrote: "If a war breaks out there, there would be a terrible slaughter of people with no benefit for either of them."
Castro said the situation in Korea presented the most serious risk of nuclear war since the Cuban missile crisis in 1962 - where there was a two-week standoff between Russia and the United States over the placing of nuclear weapons on the Caribbean island.
He added that the North Korean government "has demonstrated its technical and scientific advances" but reminded "them of their duties with those countries that have been their great friends."
Castro said a war on the Korean peninsula would affect "more than 70 per cent of the planet's population" and added that the "duty" to avoid the conflict was in the hands of Washington.
Ex-Cuban leader Fidel Castro makes rare public appearance
Retired Cuban leader Fidel Castro voted in Cuba's general election on Sunday and chatted with well wishers and Cuban reporters in Havana for more than an hour, in his first extended public appearance since 2010.
Castro had voted from his home in three previous elections since being taken ill in 2006 and giving up power to his brother Raul two years later.
Castro reportedly talked about efforts to reform the Cuban economy, Latin American integration, Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and other matters.
He was heard in a weak voice praising popular participation in Sunday's election.
Fidel Castro in 'magnificent health' after rumours
Former Cuban leader Fidel Castro hit out at rumours of his death in an article published on the state run Caubadebate website this morning. The article is accompanied by several pictures of the 86-year-old revolutionary icon outside his home wearing a checked shirt and a cowboy hat.
He said he was releasing the images to show how "dishonest" the rumours of his demise have been. He said: "I don't even remember what a headache feels like".
On Sunday, visiting former Venezuelan vice president Elias Jaua released a photo of a meeting he said he had the previous day with Castro, and a hotel manager also present for part of the meeting claimed Castro's health was "magnificent."
Castro stepped down in 2006 following a severe illness, handing power to his brother Raul.