The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), a secular left-wing political group, opened a “house of mourning” on Thursday in Gaza for the late Cuban President Fidel Castro who passed away last week at the age of 90.
Kayed al-Ghoul, a member of the PFLP’s central committee, told Ma’an that Castro’s death was a “huge loss for the Palestinian people and for humanity,” adding that Castro was the most important revolutionary leader who consistently supported the Palestinian struggle.
He said that “the people who failed to assassin Castro when he was alive, are now trying to kill him after his death,” referencing the media’s negative treatment of Castro’s legacy since his death, particularly in the United States media.
— @IAmTheAntidote (@IPNOTGlobal) November 27, 2016
Al-Ghoul highlighted that the mourning house was created to “honor the soul” of Castro, saying that it was “the least they could do” after Castro’s sustained support of the Palestinian people throughout the previous decades.
The Palestinian cause was a central issue during the whole of Castro’s political life. Diplomatic ties between Cuba and Palestine began in the same year that Castro became prime minister in 1959 following the Cuban revolution, when Raul Castro and Che Guevara visited the Gaza Strip.
Since then, the leader had consistently spoken out against Israeli violations against Palestinians, provided both diplomatic and military support to the Palestinian resistance, and also became a close friend to the late President Yasser Arafat.
— صوت الجبهة الشعبية (@PFLP_info) November 26, 2016
Under Castro’s leadership, Cuba broke off diplomatic ties with the state of Israel in 1973 and was one the first countries to recognize the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) after its founding in 1964.
In 2014, Castro, along with several other Latin American countries, directly spoke out against Israel’s most recent offensive on the besieged Gaza Strip, which left some 1,462 Palestinians dead, a third of whom were children, calling the assault a “new, repugnant form of fascism” in a column for a local Cuban newspaper.
“Why does the government of this country (Israel) think that the world will be impervious to this macabre genocide that is being committed today against the Palestinian people?” it read.
(Ma’an, PC, Social Media)