US embassy cable - 94HAVANA2542

RUMORS OF CASTRO'S ILL HEALTH -- UPDATE

Identifier: 94HAVANA2542
Wikileaks: View 94HAVANA2542 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: US Interests Section Havana
Created: 1994-04-20 21:01:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PGOV CU
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
O 202101Z APR 94
FM USINT HAVANA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 9311
INFO COMNAVBASE GUANTANAMO BAY
C O N F I D E N T I A L HAVANA 002542 
 
 
FOR ARACCA -- DENNIS HAYS 
 
E.O. 12356:      OADR:DECL 
TAGS:      PGOV, CU 
SUBJECT:   RUMORS OF CASTRO'S ILL HEALTH -- UPDATE 
 
REF: A) HAVANA 2484; B) HAVANA 2455; C) FBIS 201404Z APR 94 
 
1.  CONFIDENTIAL -- ENTIRE TEXT. 
 
2.  THE STATUS OF THE RUMORS REGARDING CASTRO'S HEALTH: 
THE RUMOR HAS SPREAD TO MUCH OF THE HAVANA POPULATION 
AND COMES IN TWO VARIATIONS:  THAT CASTRO HAS AN 
ISCHEMIA OF THE BRAIN AND THE OTHER, THAT THIS WAS 
BROUGHT ON BY AN ATTEMPT ON HIS LIFE.  ONE VERSION OF 
THE RUMOR HAS IT THAT CASTRO CANNOT BE MOVED BECAUSE OF 
THE SERIOUSNESS OF THE ILLNESS, BUT THAT CIMEQ HOSPITAL 
HAS BEEN PREPARED FOR HIM ONCE HIS CONDITION 
STABILIZES.  (THIS WOULD IN EFFECT RESOLVE THE 
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN RUMORS THAT WE HAD HEARD REFS A,B.) 
 
3.  RAUL CASTRO HAS BEEN FEATURED FAR MORE PROMINENTLY 
IN THE CUBAN MEDIA IN THE LAST FEW DAYS, INCLUDING HIS 
SPEECH IN GUANTANAMO OVER THE WEEKEND AND A FRONT PAGE 
PHOTO IN THE APRIL 20 GRANMA, WITH ANOTHER STORY ON THE 
BACKPAGE.  (RAUL SOMETIMES GETS FRONT PAGE COVERAGE, BUT 
IT IS UNUSUAL FOR HIM TO GET SO MUCH ATTENTION IN THE 
SAME EDITION.)  ONE OTHER ODDITY:  IN THE APRIL 20 
"DOING RADIO" PROGRAM ON RADIO REBELDE (REF C), MIAMI 
CORRESPONDENT MARCOS CASTELLO NOTES HOW THE EXILE 
COMMUNITY IS TRYING TO "MAR THE LEGITIMACY" OF THIS 
WEEKEND'S DIALOGUE.  AS AN EXAMPLE, HE REPORTED THAT 
THERE WERE REPORTS IN MIAMI THAT THERE WAS "AN ALLEGED 
PROBLEM" WITH CASTRO AND THAT "A HOSPITAL HAS BEEN TAKEN 
OVER." 
 
4.  WE HOPE TO HEAR FROM OUR ACTIVIST CONTACTS WITHIN 
THE NEXT DAY OR TWO. 
 
SULLIVAN 

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